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Mercedes-Benz says it will go all-electric in 2030, but with a major caveat

Mercedes-Benz says it will go all-electric by 2030, but with conditions. The German automaker says it will only sell electric vehicles “where market conditions allow,” implying that Mercedes may still sell gas-powered vehicles after 2030 in countries that lack consumer demand for EVs.

The company made the announcement during an EV strategy update Thursday morning, the latest in a series of automaker events to declare a major pivot to electric powertrains. But while other car companies have similarly promised to shift to all-EV production, Mercedes is notable by hedging its promise on external factors.

Other major automakers have included similar caveats. GM, for example, said it would be carbon neutral by 2040, but wouldn’t commit to ending the sale of gas-powered vehicles by that date. And GM’s top executives described the goal of eliminating tailpipe emissions from its new light-duty vehicles by 2035 as “an aspiration” rather than a certainty.

Still, Mercedes says it will commit €40 billion ($47 billion) to the electrification of its lineup by 2030. “We are convinced, we can do it with strong profitability, and we believe that focus on electrical is the right way to build a successful future and to enhance the value of Mercedes Benz,” said Ola Källenius, chairman of Daimler and head of Mercedes-Benz.

From 2022, Mercedes says it will offer a fully electric model in every segment, and from 2025 every model sold will be offered with a pure-electric model. Mercedes will also launch three bespoke new EV architectures for use across its entire portfolio: MB.EA for midsized and large passenger cars, AMG.EA for performance models, and Van.EA for commercial vehicles.

The company hinted at some of the new products that will be coming soon, including electric versions of Mercedes-Benz’s G-class wagons and AMG high-performance vehicles. Executives also teased the forthcoming long-range, high-powered Vision EQXX concept car, which it will reveal next year. With the EQXX, Mercedes is targeting 1,000 kilometers (621 miles) of range, and a consumption rating of more than six miles per kWh, which would make it one of the longest range EVs on the market if achieved.

With regard to its supply chain, the company will build eight gigafactory battery plants, including one in the US, with the aim of building out its battery cell capacity to 200GWh. And Mercedes announced the acquisition of Yasa, a UK-based EV motor manufacturer, to help speed up its production plans.

Mercedes isn’t alone in charting out its all-electric (or mostly all-electric) future. GM, Ford, Stellantis, Volvo, BMW, and Volkswagen have made similar promises about transitioning to mostly selling EVs. These announcements come as major governments push to put restrictions on the sale of internal combustion engine vehicles. The European Union, China, and California have all said they would ban the sale of internal combustion engine vehicles by 2035.

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