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            may 21, 2018

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Daimler Chairman at China Development Forum


The China Development Forum, taking place in Beijing from March 19 to 20, gathers government representatives and international business leaders from around the world to discuss the future of China’s economic development. Several hundred attendees are exploring this year’s topic “China and the World: Economic Transformation through Structural Reform” in sessions at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse. Daimler Chairman Dr. Dieter Zetsche at the forum outlined the key trends in the automotive industry and the company’s vision for reshaping mobility.
Dr. Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars: “The automotive industry is experiencing fundamental change: connectivity, autonomous driving, sharing and electric mobility. Each of these has the power to turn our entire industry upside down. And I truly believe: China can be ‘the turbo’ of this transformation. Electric mobility, for instance, is developing quickly here. And we are aiming to further contribute to this development by planning to produce our new generation of electric Mercedes-Benz models also in China. We are committed to delivering innovation and believe to have a common target with our partners: a both sustainable and highly fascinating auto industry in China."
Mr. Hubertus Troska, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG, responsible for Greater China: “The automotive industry is changing rapidly, perhaps nowhere faster than in China. Looking ahead, we will continuously innovate to bring Chinese customers new technologies, products and services, to shape the future of mobility through connectivity, autonomous driving, sharing and electric mobility – our C.A.S.E. strategy. As China’s automotive industry continues its positive development in 2017, we, together with our partners, remain confident in the future of both the market here and our place in it.”
In China, through its cooperation with strong local partners, Daimler has created the right conditions for further growth with healthy and profitable dealer partners, additional production capacities, and a broader product range. The country continued to be the largest individual sales market globally for Mercedes-Benz Cars in 2016. This year, Daimler will continue to invest more in business innovations, further enhance customer experiences, and explore future strategies to address larger mobility needs.

“Made in China, for China” commitment
Today, around two-thirds of the Mercedes-Benz passenger cars sold in China are manufactured locally. A key to this success has been an emphasis on the local research and development base, which currently employes 700 engineers and designers. Together with its Chinese partner BAIC, Daimler also continuously invests in local production. In 2016, the two companies agreed on the investment of four billion RMB (more than €500 million) in the further expansion of the Beijing-based engine plant.
Daimler remains committed to providing Chinese customers with innovative products and services in the fields of connectivity, autonomous driving, sharing and electric mobility. For instance, the new E-Class Long-Wheelbase launched last year in China marks a milestone on the road to autonomous driving, featuring an array of connectivity technologies and services tailor-made for local customers. As a leading mobility service provider, Daimler was the first premium automaker to offer car-sharing in China. The free- floating car-sharing service car2go launched in Chongqing in April 2016.
Given the growing importance of electric drive in the Chinese market, local production of Mercedes-Benz passenger cars also includes the C 350 e L plug-in hybrid model, and several imported plug-in hybrid models are also available in China. Daimler further extended its NEV portfolio with the recent introduction of an upgraded model of DENZA, the company’s pure electric vehicle brand. As the Chinese market holds great potential in the area of electric mobility, Daimler will continue to invest in R&D efforts to develop more efficient and environmentally friendly NEVs. The company is also planning to build cars of the EQ brand in China.

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