by Adrian-Liviu Dorofte
e-mail: mercedesbenzblog@gmail.com

Dr. Dieter Zetsche is ambitious: "We want to make this decade a Mercedes decade."


In a previous article posted at the beginning of August, we were revealing the daring goals Daimler AG's CEO, Dr. Dieter Zetsche, has in mind for the next years. To put it straight, his main aim is to get Mercedes-Benz back to where it belongs on the premium brands' market: the top spot.


The 2011-2020 decade will bring many changes to the automotive industry, as forecasts predict the demand for passenger cars by the end of it will exceed the worldwide economical growth. Following the 125th birthday of the automobile, Dr. Z embarked on outlining an enterprising strategy that he sais will enable Mercedes-Benz to become the leader of the premium segment by or before 2020: "The first decade following the 125th birthday of the automobile will bring many changes to our industry. We are very well prepared -- and we look forward to working with you to make the next decade a 'Mercedes decade'. The planning outlook is not the next quarter, but rather the next decade. Experts all agree that by 2020, demand for cars will grow faster than the overall global economy."

Nevertheless, this aggressive marketing approach designed by Zetsche and his team also takes into consideration certain weakness that are expected to take place in several markets: "Even in the future, we must be prepared for short- to mid-term market weakness. There are indications that certain markets could weaken in the next few months, but we are prepared for this outcome."

In the letter addressed to Daimler employees, he further expressed the desire to build a strong brand and the need to always come up with fresh and attractive products to keep the pace with the progress of the society and adapt to clients' dynamic tastes: "At the same time we will grow at the upper end of the model spectrum with, for example, additional variants of the next S class, another attractive SUV, as well as with models such as the CLS Shooting Brake."

One of the first targets of the 'Mercedes decade' plan is reaching the 1.5 million unit sales level by 2014 and continuing up towards 1.6 million cars sold by 2015: "In sum, we want to reach the intermediate goal of 1.5 million unit sales for Mercedes-Benz passenger cars as early as 2014 -- one year earlier than previously planned. By 2015 we should hit 1.6 million".

Dr. Dieter Zetsche stresses upon the fact a long-term projection through 2020 might be dangerous and not very realistic: "We are deliberately not stating a number for 2020: A long-term prediction like that would be very hypothetical -- and it makes no sense to start a contest for the slogan 'Who'll get more?' All the same, we're reiterating our ambition to lead: Whatever the relevant sales number toward the end of the decade may be, we want to be in the top spot."

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