Daimler AG, the Germany-based carmaker, is looking to continue its robust performance in China's premium car segment this year, with its locally produced E-Class Sport and Concept EQ show making their Asia premiere at the 14th Guangzhou Auto Show, which kicked off on November 18.
The automaker also plans to appeal to more local customers by focusing on the four pillars of future mobility: connected, autonomous, shared and electric, according to Hubertus Troska, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG responsible for Greater China, at a press briefing in Guangzhou, South China's Guangdong Province on November 18.
The All New E-Class Long Wheelbase, including two new variants - the E 200 4MATIC L and E 320 4MATIC L, which just launched in Guangzhou - are perfect examples of the "masterpiece of intelligence," with unique features and a leading Intelligent Drive system, said Nicholas Speeks, President and CEO of Beijing Mercedes-Benz Sales Service Co.
The dual-power dome design of the engine hood is also tailored to local consumers' preferences, said Speeks, noting that the design is an embodiment of the company's localization strategy in the Chinese market.
Another event highlight was the all-electric, streamlined Concept EQ, which stands for "Electric Intelligence." It also signaled the automaker's ongoing pursuit of energy efficiency.
Two electric motors power the Concept EQ, which is capable of a maximum power output of 300 kilowatts and a range of 500 kilometers on a single battery charge.
"We believe the new-energy vehicle (NEV) market is expanding rapidly, especially in China, where the market is dynamic and full of potential thanks to the favorable policies issued by the Chinese government, and we intend to build cars of the EQ brand also in China," Troska told the Global Times on November 18.
Daimler forecasts that in 2025, 15 percent to 25 percent of its total sales could be NEVs, in expectation of higher global demand in the future, Troska said.
The arrival of these new car models comes at a time when Daimler is attaching great importance to the Chinese market, as the future potential of the country might contribute to the automaker being able to regain its global leadership position.
In the first 10 months of 2016, Mercedes-Benz reported unit sales of 377,000 passenger vehicles in China, up 30 percent from the same period of the previous year. The number exceeded its total sales volume in 2015, according to data released by Daimler during the interview.
"For Mercedes-Benz, 2016 will be another great year in China, because the company continues to cater to our Chinese consumers and come up with innovative business models," said Speeks. "We remain confident in this market, and are committed to growth in China with scale-up investment in the future."
The automaker also strives to offer a range of lifestyle experience to Chinese consumers with the Mercedes me Sanlitun retail complex, allowing all service and mobility areas to be integrated seamlessly and conveniently via one stop.
The company also rolled out a car-sharing service car2go in Southwest China's Chongqing, delivering a new sustainable urban mobility solution for China.