Wednesday, 16 March 2016
Daimler's van sales rise 9 per cent
Mercedes-Benz Vans, which has reported record sales, revenue and EBIT figures for financial year 2015, delivered 321,000 vehicles, a rise of 9 per cent compared with 295,000.
Revenue also reached a new record level, up 15 per cent to €11.5 billion (previous year: €10.0 billion).
Mercedes-Benz Vans' EBIT rose by almost a third to 880 million euros (previous year's figure: 682 million euros, plus 29 percent). The company significantly exceeded its 2014 record figures.
The division is anticipating further growth and a continuation of “the very positive business trend” in 2016.
In Western Europe, Mercedes-Benz Vans' sales increased by 10 per cent to around 208,500 units (previous year's figure: 190,000). In the mid-size and large van sector it achieved a market share of 18.4 per cent (previous year's figure: 18.2).
In the domestic German market Mercedes-Benz Vans achieved record sales of 88,400 units (previous year's figure: 79,900).
In Eastern Europe, sales rose to 32,200 units – up five per cent on previous year. The Russian market experienced a 31 per cent decline in 2015. Nevertheless, the division managed to sell 9,100 vans (previous year's figure: 11,500, down 21 per cent), making Mercedes-Benz Vans the third biggest supplier in Russia and the biggest to be headquartered outside the country.
In 2015 the manufacturer celebrated an important milestone with its partner GAZ in Nizhny Novgorod when the 10,000th Sprinter Classic rolled off the production lines.
In the NAFTA region, the division increased deliveries by 29 per cent to 40,500 units (previous year's figure: 31,500). 32,400 of these vehicles were sold in the US (a rise of 25 per cent on previous year 25,800 vans) – a new high.
In Brazil, the market for large vans in 2015 fell 37 per cent. Mercedes-Benz Vans sold only 6,500 vehicles compared with the previous year’s 9,600. Even so, the division increased market share in the large vans sector by around three percentage points to 24 per cent.
In Argentina the market for large vans grew by around seven percent. Mercedes-Benz Vans witnessed a 64 per cent growth across all segments. In total the division delivered over 6,100 vehicles to customers (previous year's figure: 3,800, plus 64 per cent). The division has significantly expanded its market share in the large van segment to 43 percent (plus nine percentage points). Mercedes-Benz Vans sold a total of 15,800 vans in Latin America (previous year's figure: 16,100, minus two percent).
Last year was the Sprinter's most successful. The so-called “world van” achieved growth of over four per cent to around 194,200 vehicles (previous year's figure: 186,300). Since its market launch in 1995 a total of three million units have been delivered worldwide.
In the US, around 28,600 Sprinter vehicles were delivered to customers in 2015, 11 per cent more than in the previous year (previous year's figure: 25,800).
And the division is setting up a new production location in Charleston in the US state of South Carolina. Over the next few years, Mercedes-Benz Vans will invest over $500 million US in development of the new plant. Ground-breaking ceremony takes place later this year.
The launch of the V-Class MPV in China, the world's biggest car market, should see Daimler's Vans division attract new customers in the privately used vans segment. The Mercedes-Benz V-Class will premiere in Beijing, China on 18 March and will be available from mid-April.
Production of the V-Class at Daimler's local joint venture Fujian Benz Automotive Co., Ltd (FBAC) in Fuzhou has already started using uniform Mercedes-Benz production processes and production standards.
The Fujian Benz Automotive plant collaborates closely with the Spanish production site in Vitoria, Mercedes-Benz Vans' global competence centre for mid-size vehicles.
The Fuzhou plant manufactures solely for the Chinese market. The V-Class has been available in Japan since January 2016. In spring it will also be available in the United Arab Emirates and other markets in the Middle East.
Mercedes-Benz Vans has set the goal of slightly outperforming last year's EBIT.
Mercedes-Benz Vans claims it is the first premium manufacturer to introduce a pickup, allowing it to expand its product portfolio into “a very promising segment”. The initial target markets for the new vehicle are Latin America, South Africa, Australia and Europe before, presumably, it launches into the US where Ford Motor Company’s F-Series trucks stand supreme; surely the F-Series is the world’s most successful pick-up truck.