Mercedes Says Combustion Engines Integral To Future

Michael Accardi
by Michael Accardi
Mercedes views combustion engines as integral to the future.

Mercedes-Benz is reassessing its electrification strategy, acknowledging that its initial targets were overly ambitious.

Mercedes CEO Ola Källenius openly discussed the strategy shuffle with German publication Wirtschaftswoche, emphasizing the continued importance of the internal combustion engine well into the 2030s, and beyond.

To comply with stringent emissions regulations and ensure its combustion engines stay relevant, Mercedes is making substantial investments in ICE technology. This year alone Mercedes-Benz is allocating approximately $15 billion solely to its passenger car division.

To be fair this budget isn't just for high-tech combustion technology, electrification, and digitalization efforts will also receive a share. Källenius did not disclose the exact amount dedicated to ICE development but did confirm the amount is much more substantial than originally initially planned.

Expect an increase in hybridization from Mercedes, instead of full electrification.

The aim is to maintain the technological superiority of Mercedes’ combustion powertrains. Källenius warned that without these substantial investments, the company's combustion engine business could face significant challenges by 2027 or 2028.

The updates are crucial for meeting the upcoming Euro 7 and China 7 emissions regulations, which will demand cleaner-running engines. Mercedes plans to enhance all relevant combustion engines and transmission combinations to meet these standards. Future engines will likely be electrified to some extent, leading to a rise in hybrid models.

Mercedes initially aimed for plug-in hybrids and fully electric vehicles to constitute about 50% of its annual sales by 2025. However, this target is absolutely unattainable. The company once projected it would go fully electric by 2030, but it has since revised its goals. Mercedes now aims for hybrids and electric cars to make up half of its deliveries by that time, while still aiming for carbon neutrality by 2040.

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Michael Accardi
Michael Accardi

An experienced automotive storyteller known for engaging and insightful content. Michael also brings a wealth of technical knowledge and experience having been part of the Ford GT program at Multimatic and built cars that raced in TCR, IMSA, and IndyCar.

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2 of 3 comments
  • Dustin Dustin on Jul 02, 2024

    I knew when electric cars came out that they were not the future, simply because of the tech of batteries, we don't think twice replace a flashlight battery a dealt 5amph battery after 7 years, but a car battery even after ten years is a fortune and nobody wants to spend 15k for a batt on a old car, ice engines last for decades with minimal forget elec cars for now and maybe forever, love my electric tools though.

  • Dustin Dustin on Jul 02, 2024

    a golf cart is great for electric, inside a warehouse for zero emissions, or for an old lady or man that does local groceries and pharmacies visits then just plugs in at night, then you still have a dead battery after ten years or a dead person. batteries don't last forever like a mechanical engine. antique Ferraris in 100 years will not be electric like they are now. Tesla will probably go bankrupt in the future as all the car makers change their mind about electric cars and focus more on ice just like this article.