Mercedes-Benz boss commits to combustion as long as it is viable Car News

Ola Källenius, CEO of Mercedes-Benz parent company Daimler, has vowed that the company will continue to produce combustion engines as long as they remain commercially viable, but will be ready to switch to pure electrification as soon as it takes. meaning.

Speaking at the Financial Times’ annual Future of the Car summit, Källenius gave further details on his plans for Mercedes-Benz to move away from combustion technology altogether.

“On the road to zero emissions,” he said, “we’ll get to a point where the scaling changes, where electric propulsion becomes our dominant engine, and ultimately you actually lose the scale when you go. combustion.

“So it’s good that from an asset perspective, investing in cash is in the past. You can economically use those assets as long as the market carries them and it makes sense.”

His comments suggest that the company will not seek to invest substantially in the development of new gasoline and diesel powertrains, but instead bring existing units into compliance with the new Euro 7 regulations and continue to add electric assistance where appropriate. to reduce emissions and improve efficiency.

Källenius explained: “This is why we did not artificially choose a point [for a full transition to electrification], but when a new technology takes over, you get to a point on that S-curve where the exponential growth becomes so fast that it happens on its own.

“When that point comes, we will be ready, and we will not hesitate for nostalgic reasons to switch to the new technology 100%.”

Daimler has already transformed its smart city car subsidiary into a brand dedicated exclusively to electric vehicles and, in partnership with the Chinese auto giant, Geely is preparing an all-new Smart range, which will be presented later this year by a new SUV concept.

But the German company has also agreed to partner with Geely, and its subsidiary Volvo, on the development of combustion engines for entry-level cars. Production of Mercedes-Benz four-cylinder gasoline engines will be transferred to China, before the two companies jointly put a new family of four-cylinder hybrid gasoline engines into local production.

Källenius mentionned: “With Geely, we have a very good partnership. The projects we have have a clear logic: win-win. If both parties can win on an economic, time and technical basis, we are going for it.”

He added: “The scale effect of doing this together was smarter than doing it alone, especially in a decade of transformation where some of the volume is shifted to electrification only.”


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This notice was published: 2021-05-11 16:54:14