“If everybody’s doing it, there’s a lot of guys doing it,” Tom Cruise once said as Vincent Lauria to Paul Newman’s Fast Eddie Felson in The Colour of Money (1986). “A lot of guys doing it… but only one guy can be the best.” So how exactly will Mercedes-Benz distinguish itself from the competition as they race to become all-electric by 2030? By committing a sizeable €40 billion / AU$64 billion investment, of course.
The German marque’s parent company – Daimler AG – has now outlined a strategy for kicking into third gear and achieving an electrified future in relatively fast fashion; which not only involves a focus on R&D, but also partnering up with the experts to set up eight factories across the globe for the specific purposes of producing battery cells and electric motors. These eight factories are on track to join a network of nine plants currently in development for building battery systems (announced on a previous occasion).
“We really want to go for it… and be dominantly, if not all electric, by the end of the decade,” says Mercedes-Benz Chief Executive Ola Källenius.
“The EV shift is picking up speed – especially in the luxury segment where Mercedes-Benz belongs. The tipping point is getting closer and we will be ready as markets switch to electric-only.”
The announcement comes days after the European Union proposes an effective ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars starting from 2035, obviously to reduce carbon emissions and combat climate change. Daimler anticipates its electric and hybrid electric cars will generate 50% of total sales by 2025 – far earlier than the company had initially forecasted – with plans to unveil three all-electric platforms to cover its broad range within the same year (passenger and SUVs, vans, high-performance).
But while production is scheduled to exclusively involve electric vehicles from 2025 onwards, at the current stage, Daimler AG are hesitant to lock in hard deadline to completely cease selling all Mercedes-Benz vehicles with internal combustion engines.
“We need to move the debate away from when you build the last combustion engine because it’s not relevant. The question is how quickly can you scale up to being close to 100% electric and that’s what we’re focusing on.”
“I am convinced that we will be successful in this exciting new era.”
You can read up on the strategy for Mercedes-Benz to go completely electric in further detail below.