Mercedes-Benz Not Threatened By Tesla's India Entry: 'Our EV Charging Bays Will Be Open' Says Exec

With Tesla knocking at the doors of an Indian debut, Mercedes-Benz, India’s leading luxury car seller, welcomes the competition, suggesting that the electric vehicle (EV) market is only set to grow with the entry of new players.

What Happened: “Our EV charging bays will be open for Tesla cars, just like they are for an EV of any other brand,” stated Santosh Iyer, MD & CEO of Mercedes in India. He expressed optimism about the impact of new entrants on the market during an interview with TOI.

Mercedes currently offers electric models at its dealerships and boasts 116 charging stations across 36 locations in the country.

Despite Tesla’s anticipated entry, Iyer remains confident, noting that Tesla's targeted price points are significantly lower than those of Mercedes.

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He believes that new competitors will help expand the electric vehicle market rather than just vie for existing shares. “New entrants will only expand volumes in different segments and grow the market,” he added.

What to know: Mercedes reported a record-breaking first quarter in 2024, selling 5,142 units — a 15% increase from the previous year — and plans to introduce three new electric models this year. EVs accounted for 7% of Mercedes’s Q1 sales in India, a figure Iyer expects could rise to 25% or more by 2030.

Highlighting the success of models like the EQE SUV, EQB SUV, and the high-end EQS luxury sedan, Mercedes anticipates substantial growth in its EV lineup. While Mercedes is monitoring new EV policies that may offer lower import duties for substantial investments, Iyer mentioned they are awaiting more details before making any commitments.

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