Following a drop to third place among luxury automakers, the CEO of Mercedes parent company Daimler is setting his eyes on an ambitious target of regaining the top spot in 2020.
“I am confident that [Mercedes-Benz] will be ahead of our rivals by 2020 at the latest,” Dieter Zetsche, Daimler CEO, commented in an interview over the weekend.
With Mercedes now behind BMW and Audi in the global rankings, Zetsche has a lot of work ahead.
Zetsche explained that he was hoping to reach that goal during his current contract with Daimler, but with a contract expiration of December 2013, that seems like an unlikely timeline. Still, Zetsche is confident that he’ll receive a contract extension and work towards retaking the global luxury lead in 2020.
With Mercedes-Benz missing its operating profit target this year by 1 billion Euros, Daimler will be cutting costs at Mercedes by 2 billion Euros ($2.6 billion) by 2014. While other mass-market European automakers are seeing their sales slump to the worst in nearly two decades, BMW, Audi and Mercedes are able to continue growth, thanks to success in China and the US.
With competitive new products like the A-Class and vehicles based off the A-class platform, IHS is predicting that Mercedes will retake the number 2 spot from Audi by the end of next year.
[Source: Automotive News]
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