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- Extra shifts in July and August 2011
- In July record number of right-hand-drive vehicles
Stuttgart/East London, South Africa — Owing to the good demand situation, the Mercedes-Benz plant in East London also is increasing its output: beginning in July, the plant will work additional shifts in its passenger cars production also on the four Saturdays of August. In July the largest number of right-hand-drive vehicles in the history of the East London plant rolled off the assembly line.
Dr. Wolfgang Bernhard, member of the Board of Management responsible for Manufacturing and Procurement Mercedes-Benz Cars & Mercedes-Benz Vans: “The C-Class is selling outstandingly well. To meet the high customer demand we are working extra shifts in production also in South Africa.”
Rainer Ruess, head of the Mercedes-Benz East London plant: “With the entire team putting in a great effort, we are producing at the limits of capacity in East London – never before did we build so many vehicles for right-hand-drive markets in one month as in July.”
Globally, since the first month of its introduction to the market the new generation of the C-Class Sedan has defended the top position in its class. In all, Mercedes-Benz posted 11.4 percent higher sales in the C-Class segment in the first half of 2011 – in June even 18.7 percent.
Many awards for production quality
The East London plant’s excellent production quality has repeatedly won recognition: just recently the renowned market research institute J.D. Power and Associates presented East London, together with the Mercedes-Benz Bremen plant, a Gold Award as the best car production facilities in Europe and Africa. Last year East London received a Platinum Award from J.D. Power as the best auto industry plant worldwide; in 2009 it was also the recipient of a Gold Award.
About the Mercedes-Benz East London plant
Mercedes-Benz has had a presence in South Africa since 1954 and acquired majority ownership of the East London plant in 1984. The current C-Class belongs to the third vehicle generation to be manufactured on South Africa’s Eastern Cape. Since the year 2000 the plant exports sedans to right-hand-drive markets; since the start of production of the new C-Class in 2007 it also manufactures left-hand-drive vehicles for export to the USA. In 2010 about 2300 employees manufactured more than 52,000 vehicles. Beginning in 2014 the East London plant — as one of four global locations alongside the C-Class competence center in Bremen, the US plant in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, and the Chinese production facility Beijing Benz Automotive Co., Ltd. (BBAC) — also will produce the successor generation of the current C-Class.