Over the past decade Mercedes-Benz has been on a mission to fill almost every segment niche imaginable, but it now seems as though the German manufacturer is hinting that a more focused line-up may better serve its future goals.
According to Automotive News, Ola Kallenius, CEO of Mercedes-Benz parent Daimler, hinted that the brand’s compact model line-up could be stringently revised in the next generation. In turn, the brand will focus on larger and higher margin cars.
Kallenius stated that monikers such as the A- and B-Class were beneficial to the brand’s rejuvenation over the past few years but are unlikely to remain a priority in terms of future resource allocation.
“Maybe we went at a bit too far to cover each and every space into each and every segment. Compact particularly comes to mind.This is not where the main thrust should go, we should not become a competitor of the volume makers, ” Kallenius told analysts during an online strategy presentation.
All compact models which use the front-wheel drive MFA2 architecture accounted for 25 per cent of the brand’s 2,38 million sales last year. However, Kallenius confirmed that the goal of achieving a double-digit return on sales by 2025 will focus on doubling sales figures of Mercedes-Maybach and increasing AMG sales.
“We have a great opportunity for horizontal growth, not adding more cars to the compact segment but finding more customer groups to come under the Mercedes master brand,” Kallenius said.
Bear in mind, Mercedes-Benz has no plans to discontinue any of its current compact models. Instead, sales focus would be on higher-end variants of these products.
“We will not take existing products out. We want to move them upwards in terms of their margin contribution,” he said. “We want to raise the bar to extract the maximum out of the existing portfolio.”
The next generation of compact models will be based on the brand’s electrified MMA platform. This will also cover its midsized products.