CEO Dieter Zetsche OK with Mercedes-Benz EV Timing

Mercedes-Benz might be late to the EV party, but that doesn’t bother Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche.

The head of Mercedes-Benz’ parent company isn’t fazed that rivals BMW and Tesla have launched high-volume luxury EVs first.

SEE ALSO: Daimler Unveils New Electric Brand Through Generation EQ Concept in Paris

In his mind, it’s like the timing of attending a party.

“Whoever arrives too early is alone on the dance floor. Whoever comes too late may have already missed the best part,” Zetsche said, according to Automotive News.

With EVs accounting for less than one percent of vehicle sales in Europe, Daimler isn’t rushing its planned Generation EQ concept to market. Right now, the company is planning to bring it to market at the end of the decade.

SEE ALSO: Mercedes CEO: New ‘EQ’ Electric Car Sub Brand Will Beat Tesla By 2025

Daimler is looking more forward to 2025, which is when Zetsche believes the cost of batteries will drop to 100 euros per kilowatt hour, which would be one-third of where it was in 2012.

That year may mark the time when the costs of getting optimal fuel efficiency from conventional combustion engines will match up with a downward cost curve for EV powertrains.

Daimler also expects to have 10 EVs on the road by then, including three from its Smart city-car brand, with those 10 vehicles totaling 25 percent of the company’s global sales.

Daimler has built EVs before, on a small scale across its various brands. By contrast, BMW and Tesla are building EVs at a mass-production level and Audi and Porsche have already introduced EV concepts and prototypes. Daimler has invested $1 billion euros in a lithium-ion battery pack plant, for its part.

Company officials believe that EVs will be judged on more than range or acceleration – they believe powertrain quality, autonomous driving tech, connectivity and integration of shared mobility will matter more to consumers. They also believe that battery capacity will double every five years without the need to increase volume.

Automotive News


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