Mercedes confirms next gen C-class to be built in USA and Germany
The diminishing value of the U.S. dollar, most notably against the Euro and Yen, is causing plenty of grief for foreign automakers. While the US market has been in the tank for the past two years, it still remains a major market for companies like Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz. All three brands have been looking at ways to relieve some of the exchange rate pressure and Mercedes has decided that more “dollar zone” production will be part of the solution.
When the next generation C-Class rolls out in 2014, German production will be consolidated at Daimler’s Bremen factory while units for the North American market will be built in the U.S. There’s been no announcement about where production will take place, but an expansion of the SUV factory in Alabama is one possibility. On a related side note, part of the reason the Premium German brands have recently avoided selling four-cylinder versions of their entry-level models in the States has been the exchange rates and the associated lack of profitability. With new CAFE rules coming, it’s likely that we’ll be seeing more moves like this in the next several years.