Mercedes-Benz: Painting the Town Green
Since 1886, the world’s first automobile maker Mercedes-Benz has been a leader in the innovation of performance, style, technology, design and safety.
Now they will continue to innovate by maintaining all of what they do best with no sacrifices made to the performance of these beloved and award-winning vehicles – all the while protecting Mother Earth and all of her interests.
In a very stimulating and informative conversation with Rasheq Zarif, supervisor of the Mercedes-Benz USA Product Strategy in the Advanced Product Planning Division tells us all about how the future of Mercedes-Benz is all about painting the town green.
Bryan: Where does Mercedes-Benz see itself in the coming years with a growing emphasis on environmentally friendly vehicles and tightening emissions standards?
Rasheq: Of course greenhouse gas regulations are very important – not only from the standpoint of the environment, but also with respect to curbing fuel consumption here in the U.S. What’s very important to note is that the regulation is based on volumes as well as emissions. Although, we have the V12s themselves that are a source of high output from the performance standpoint, they are low volume vehicles here in our portfolio. Also, what we have planned is more efficient measures within the engines themselves.
For example, within the last two years we switched our engines to direct injection. This is more fuel efficient while still maintaining toque and horsepower. On our V8s, where we have 5.5 liter that we’ve been able to bring down to a 4.6 liter with turbo, it still maintains the performance and horsepower of the vehicle while being more fuel efficient. Another example is our Eco “Stop/Start” that we’re rolling out on all our car lines in the next few years. That will be a standard features as opposed to an option. It’s being rolled out on the AMGs also to increase fuel efficiency.
The other thing that we have which is pretty unique to Mercedes-Benz that I can’t say others do – is that we have a wide variety of fuel efficient and environmentally friendly vehicles in our portfolio. We have the BlueTec diesels, the S400 Hybrids, and the E400 coming out later this year, the Smart electric vehicle, the third generation will be out later this year, the F-Cell hydrogen electric vehicle which has been rolled out in Southern California and will be hitting Northern California this year. The reason why we have this wide of an array is because of the various dynamic driving styles. Each of these vehicles meets the needs of different types of drivers, while meeting the needs of the environment. At Mercedes-Benz, we realize that there is no one “silver bullet” that will meet the needs of everyone.Continued on the next page