Mumbai: Luxury car maker Mercedes-Benz will launch an electric version of its Smart model by 2010. The company is also looking to introduce electric variants of its popular A-Class and B-Class models, the company stated.
The German car-maker will target customers in large metropolitan areas, where the demand has gradually shifted for vehicles running on alternate fuel, mainly due to the soaring oil prices.
Daimler will also bring out an electric version of its A-Class model to be driven by a fuel cell motor. It is expected to run on lithium-ion batteries. Lithium batteries, common in cellphones and laptops, are significantly more powerful for their size and weight than other types of batteries.
Also to curb the greenhouse gases emission, countries across the globe are banning emission-heavy cars, forcing leading automakers to introduce eco-friendly cars such as battery electrics, fuel cells and highly efficient internal combustion engines that can operate on biofuels.
The products supplied by the Mercedes-Benz Cars division range from the high-quality small cars of the smart brand to the premium automobiles of the Mercedes-Benz, Mercedes AMG and Mercedes-Benz McLaren brands and to the Maybach luxury sedans.
Most of these vehicles are produced in Germany, but the division also has production facilities in the United States, France, South Africa, Brazil, India, Vietnam and Indonesia, and since the year 2005 also in China.
Worldwide, Mercedes-Benz Cars has 17 production sites. Its most important markets in 2007 were Germany with 27 per cent of unit sales, the other markets of Western Europe (34 per cent), the United States (19 per cent) and Japan (4 per cent).
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