Mercedes-Benz is adjusting its network of plants to manufacture a new range of luxury electric vehicles as it prepares to switch to electric by the end of the decade.
Mercedes aims to halve CO2 emissions per passenger car over the life cycle by the end of this decade compared to 2020.
"We are ready for the rapid scaling of electric vehicle volumes," said Joerg Burzer, board member for production and supply chain, adding the new setup followed talks between management and worker representatives.
Plants in Sindelfingen, Bremen, Rastatt — all in Germany — and Kecskemet, in Hungary, will start production of new models in the top end luxury, core luxury and entry luxury segments from the middle of the decade, said Mercedes.
Battery systems will be supplied by a production network with factories in three continents, it said.
"The local production of battery systems is a key success factor for the Mercedes-Benz electric ramp-up and a decisive component in being able to meet the global demand for electric vehicles flexibly and efficiently," it said in a statement.
In February, Mercedes-Benz said it expects to have factories producing exclusively electric vehicles (EVs) by the second half of the decade but will steer clear of building EV-only plants, instead keeping production lines flexible in line with market demand.
The carmaker foresees some of its production lines within factories switching fully to electric even sooner, production chief Joerg Burzer said in an interview with Reuters.
"Building a whole new battery-electric vehicle factory takes time. We have taken another approach," Burzer said.
"We will certainly have some lines producing only electric vehicles in the next few years... we also see whole factories switching to electric - that is a topic for the second half of the decade."
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