Mercedes makes government purchase list

By Gong Zhengzheng (China Daily)
Updated: 2007-03-17 09:30

Locally-made Mercedes-Benz sedans were put on the Chinese government's purchasing list on Friday, giving an extra boost to the German luxury brand's fast-growing China sales.

Beijing-Benz DaimlerChrysler Automotive Co Ltd, a joint venture assembling the Mercedes-Benz E280 sedan in Beijing, said in a statement that the move will break the monopoly of another German luxury car brand Audi in the fleet of high-ranking Chinese government officials.

The move will provide the joint venture a "sustainable and stable" growth, it said.
BMW, the other German luxury car brand made in China, has not been put on the governmental procurement list.

The government purchasing sector is a hot battleground where domestic and foreign automakers have been competing fiercely. Last year, governments at all levels in China spent 70 billion yuan on vehicles, according to industry data.

Mercedes-Benz's China sales, including those in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, surged by 52 percent year-on-year to 4,800 units in the first two months of 2007, Mercedes-Benz (China) Ltd said on Friday.

The strong performance in China overtook Japan as the brand's biggest market in Asia-Pacific, the company said.

Meanwhile, sales of its S-Class sedans in China more than doubled to 2,230 units, keeping the nation No 2 in the world S-Class market.


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