Daimler to cut Mercedes-Benz sales incentives this year

Article by Anita Panait, on February 11, 2014

Daimler is planning to trim sales incentives on Mercedes-Benz vehicles and hike prices of some models as demand for them continues to outpace supply, chief executive Dieter Zetsche has remarked.  Zetsche said that he expects "pricing to improve significantly" in 2014, adding that in every country he visits, dealers were pleading him to provide more of the Mercedes’ compact cars like the new CLA.

Daimler posted a 44-percent surge in deliveries of compact vehicles and a 43-percent hike in sales of the revamped flagship S class in the fourth quarter of 2013.

Daimler expects its operating profit from ongoing operations for 2014 to surpass the EUR7.9 billion ($10.7 billion) posted in 2013. Zetsche has vowed to reclaim the luxury-car sales crown by 2020 after losing it to BMW in 2005 and yielding second place to Audi in 2011.

Mercedes is planning to launch 30 models through 2020, including a dozen that have no predecessor, Zetsche said. Mercedes will roll out in March a new version of the mid-sized C-class sedan and the GLA. Mercedes will also roll out an electric version of the B-class compact in the United States as well as a coupe variant of the S class.

Mercedes posted a 15-percent surge in deliveries in January. The Daimler CEO is also working to turn around its Smart brand by collaborating with Renault to develop new models.  Smart is set to present in 2014 a new version of its two-seater and revive a four-seat model that will be underpinned by the same platform that underpins Renault’s Twingo hatchback.

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