Germany based luxury carmaker, Mercedes-Benz India has announced its goal to have a portfolio of eight electric vehicles within a year, as the demand for zero-emission vehicles in India gains momentum.
With the sales mark almost breaching the 1000 units market, the maker of EQS is planning to double its portfolio by adding another four new models in the next 8-12 months.
The company currently has EQB, EQC, EQS – 53 AMG – a CBU (Completely Built Unit), and EQS 580-Made in India, and almost all of them have a waiting period of 3-6 months.
In 2023, the company has plans of launching 10 new models and electric vehicles will be amongst the key pillars of its product offensive this year.
In the internal combustion engine space, the new generation GLC and the GT63 AMG e-Performance for the high-end – with a plug-in hybrid will also be launched.
Matthias Luehrs, Head of Region Overseas, Mercedes-Benz AG said, “We are very happy with the development of EVs in the Indian market, we expect 25% of our total sales to come from EVs in the next four years. We are moving towards an all-electric future by 2030-2032. We expect the transition in India to also gather pace. However, if there are some markets, which may still need an ICE car, we will remain flexible. But at this point, the focus is all electric by 2030-32.”
India was the fastest-growing market for Mercedes Benz in 2022, with a growth of 41% and Luehrs says that the company expects the double-digit growth momentum to continue in 2023.
The country is already the fifth largest market in the region overseas for Mercedes Benz – which accounts for 20% of overall sales for the German luxury car maker. It is also the largest market with a completely knocked down plant anywhere in the world.
Luehrs who was in India for a Business Review Meeting after two years told select media persons that India is one of the most important countries in the region overseas, and in terms of growth rate it will figure amongst the top three markets in terms of growth this year too.
“The Indian market has already crossed the pre-covid levels and we are looking at another year of healthy growth. Some of the other markets around the world are still growing at 3-5% and yet to breach pre-covid levels. This market has seen structural changes, the average age is getting younger and there is a higher share of women buyers, we are very well placed to capitalize on the future growth of this market,” he added.
When queried if the company is looking at further investment or adding more capacity, Luehrs says that the current production capacity is adequate in Chakan to cater to the future requirement and there is no plan to go in for local production.
Mercedes-Benz India sold 15822 cars in 2022 and according to people in the know, it is likely to breach the 18000 units mark in 2023 making it yet another record year for the company.
The company continues to sit on pending bookings of 4500 units.
On supply chain challenges, he added, “chip crisis is not over yet, we are not out of the woods yet, but it is a lot more plannable.”