Stuttgart – Mercedes-Benz’s SUV models are celebrating another milestone. Since the launch of Mercedes-Benz’s first sports utility vehicle – the G-Class – over 30 years ago, more than two million G-Class, M-Class, R-Class, GL-Class and GLK-Class models have been delivered to customers. Dr. Joachim Schmidt, Executive Vice President Sales and Marketing Mercedes-Benz Cars: “Our entire SUV family is extremely popular among our customers, particularly in the USA and in its second-largest market China. With the launch of our first sports utility vehicle – the G‑Class – more than 30 years ago, we entered a segment in which we are now very successful with a total of five models. The SUVs today are an important pillar of Mercedes-Benz’s growth and have achieved a new sales record in every month since July 2010. The new Mercedes-Benz M-Class, which has enjoyed fantastic customer response to date, will give sales a further boost.”
In November 2011, Mercedes-Benz SUVs achieved another monthly sales record with deliveries of 25,552 models (+23.4%). From January through November, a total of 221,518 sports utility vehicles have been delivered worldwide (+24.3%), more than ever before in this period. The successful run-out of the M-Class was particularly noteworthy, as was the excellent start of its new models in the U.S. A new peak was set by the GLK, whose deliveries are at a record high since the beginning of the year (+25.6%). To meet the strong demand on the Chinese market, the small SUV is being produced locally in China since early December. The other model series have also developed positively in the year to date with significant increases in sales. R-Class sales jumped by 50.3 per cent, the G-Class recorded growth of 30.9 per cent, GL sales climbed by 28.9 per cent, and deliveries of the M-Class were up 15.8% despite the model change. In the coming year, the new GL and the new generations of the GLK and the G-Class will generate additional demand in the SUV segment.
The SUV models account for around one-fifth of global Mercedes-Benz sales. By far the largest market for the SUV family as well as the M-, GLK-, and GL-Class are the United States. The second largest market for the SUVs is China, followed by Germany. The classic sports utility vehicle, the G-Class, is most popular in its domestic market Germany, while the R-Class is most in demand in China.
The latest star of the Mercedes-Benz SUV family is the third generation of the M-Class, which was launched last November. One of its strongest features is its outstanding energy efficiency. As the most fuel-efficient SUV in its segment, the M-Class became the first vehicle in its class to receive the prestigious TÜV (Technical Control Board) environmental certificate – just in time for its launch. The strengths of the permanent 4-wheel-drive premium SUV also include excellent safety features and well-balanced driving comfort with strong driving dynamics both on- and off-road. Thanks to its outstanding safety systems, the M-Class was recognized as the best vehicle in its segment and awarded the top five star rating under the European NCAP (New Car Assessment Programme) for excellent occupant protection.
The new M-Class is the top model in its segment when it comes to value retention. Just recently it was recognized by “Focus Online” and “Bähr & Fess Forecast” as one of the best performers in terms of residual values in 2015. The ML 250 BlueTEC can still yield 55 per cent of its new value as a four-year-old used car. The Mercedes-Benz
M-Class was also awarded the “Golden Steering Wheel 2011” by readers of German “Bild am Sonntag” and “Auto Bild”. The other SUV models are also extremely popular among customers. This year, the longest-standing Mercedes-Benz model series, the G-Class, was crowned “SUV of the Year” for the eighth time. This major award is voted by the readers of the German “Off Road” magazine. Meanwhile, the readers of “AutoBild Allrad” gave the G-Class the victory in the “Off-road vehicles and SUVs over €60,000” category, followed by the GL-Class.