Daimler, the owner of Mercedes-Benz, has announced that it plans to invest €500m (£437m) in its Hambach factory in France to move production of its upcoming electric compact Mercedes-Benz.
By 2022, Mercedes-Benz plans to launch more than 10 new electric cars, from compact sized to SUVs, and that the Smart brand, also owned by Daimler which is produced in Hambach, will develop only electric cars from 2020.
Dieter Zetsche, the head of Mercedes-Benz, said: “20 years ago, we started an exemplary Franco-German project with the production of the Smart in Hambach.”
“Now we take the next step and for the first time in our more than 100-year old history we bring the production of Mercedes-Benz to France. With the compact EQ model from Hambach we continue our electric initiative.”
The new Mercedes-Benz EQ is said to be rivalling Tesla's upcoming Model 3 which has had a turbulent production process, currently failing to meet production targets.
The Hambach plant, which has up until now only produced the brand Smart, was put into use in 1997 and currently has more than 800 employees working there.
Markus Schaefer, production chief at Mercedes-Benz, said: “With the production of a compact electric car in Hambach, we are adding further capacities for our electric initiative at six locations on three continents.”
“The smart plant in Hambach will become a part of our global compact car production network with the lead plant Rastatt, Germany.”