Mercedes-Benz applies for US grants for factory expansion
As reported by the Handelsblatt with reference to insiders, Mercedes-Benz is planning to expand its SUV plant in Tuscaloosa in the US state of Alabama and also its van plant in Charleston in South Carolina because of the lavish subsidy under the Inflation Reduction Act. The company confirmed to “Handelsblatt” that it had submitted funding applications for both US factories.
In Tuscaloosa, Mercedes currently produces the large combustion SUV GLE and GLS and the all-electric EQE SUV and EQS SUV. According to Handelsblatt, Mercedes could also make the electric version of the GLC based on the Mercedes-Benz Electric Architecture Midsize (MB.EA-M) there from 2026. Alternatively, according to the insiders quoted, production in Mexico is also being considered.
Mercedes-Benz is also planning to extend its van plant in Charleston to build mid-size luxury vans, such as the V-Class there from 2026 onwards, in addition to large vans, such as the Sprinter, on the basis of the new VAN.EA electric platform.
Mercedes is expected to make an official decision this year or early next year, reports the Handelsblatt. It has been public since mid-2021 that the carmaker will debut three new pure electric platforms in 2025: The MB.EA covers all medium-sized and large passenger cars above the MMA and will be the electric basis of the future BEV portfolio as a scalable modular system; the AMG.EA electric platform is intended for the performance models; electric vans and light commercial vehicles will be based on the new VAN.EA. All other new platforms will subsequently also be purely electric.
Mercedes wants to sell only electric cars by the end of the decade – with the restriction “wherever market conditions permit.” It will then no longer sell any plug-in hybrids either. The known interim target of an electric share of 50 per cent of sales in 2025 still includes PHEVs.