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Mercedes-Benz delays EV debut by a year after Jaguar, Audi SUVs flop

Daimler AG's luxury brand will start sales of the EQC crossover in 2021 rather than early next year

Bloomberg 

Mercedes-Benz
Mercedes-Benz

is putting off the US debut of its first electric vehicle by a year, in the latest sign of just how difficult a time automakers are having replicating Tesla’s success.

Daimler AG’s luxury brand will start sales of the EQC crossover in 2021 rather than early next year. The German carmaker said in an emailed statement that it’s made the strategic decision to first support growing demand for the model in Europe, where deliveries began earlier this year.

The world’s top-seller of premium autos has touted the EQC(pictured) and the series of battery-powered models it has planned under the EQ sub-brand as an answer both to and its traditional rivals. But the initial electric vehicles, and Audi, introduced in the US market this year, have underwhelmed on the sales charts, failing to keep up even with Tesla’s years-old Model S and X.

Not Much of a Charge

and Audi’s electric SUVs have trailed Tesla’s years-old models.

Daimler has at least 10 purely battery-powered cars planned through 2022 to help meet tougher emissions rules around the globe. But while regulatory pressure is picking up, US demand has been tepid for models other than Tesla’s lower-priced Model 3. Consumers continue to harbor concerns about limited driving range, long charging times and high sticker prices.

First Published: Mon, December 16 2019. 00:34 IST
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