With Mr Eberhard Kern taking charge at Mercedes Benz India, the German luxury car giant is looking at dramatically boosting volumes in India beginning from 2013 and here’s the plan. Reporting from the annual Mercedes Benz blogger’s meet that Mercedes Benz India organized at Pune yesterday, Team ICB’s correspondent states that the car brand plans to launch the diesel version of the B-Class Sports Tourer in June 2013. By then, CKD assembly of the B-Class would have begun at Mercedes Benz’s Chakan assembly unit. A turbo diesel engine powered Mercedes Benz B-Class is expected to boost sales of this car, which is currently only available with a turbo petrol engine.
The B-Class Diesel will be powered by a 1.8 Liter turbo diesel engine, tuned to deliver a peak power of 108 Bhp while peak torque is rated at 250 Nm. While Mercedes Benz does have a higher powered version of this engine, with a 136 Bhp-300 Nm output, we’re leaning towards the lower power engine for India. The diesel engined model is expected to garner the lion’s share of sales for the B-Class in India, given the high demand for diesel powered luxury cars. The Diesel powered B-Class is expected to be priced about a couple of lakhs higher than the petrol engined version.
The other big launch for Mercedes Benz in India during 2013, will be the A-Class sports hatchback. The car will bow into India in June, this year. This car will sit underneath the B-Class and will be Mercedes Benz’s least priced car model for the Indian luxury car market. Apart from sharing the MFA platform with the B-Class, the A-Class is expected to be assembled at Chakan through the CKD route. The car will also share its turbo petrol engine and turbo diesel engine line up with the B-Class. Transmission will be the 7 speed dual clutch automatic gearbox with power being transmitted to the front wheels of the car.
The starting price of the base petrol model of the A-Class sports hatchback is expected to be pegged close to the INR 20 lakh mark, making it a mouth watering price for folks wanting to drive around in a car with the three pointed star badge on the bonnet. The whole idea of the A-Class sports hatchback is to lower the entry price for Mercedes Benz cars while maintaining the high level of luxury and performance associated with German marque. Through cars like the A-Class, B-Class and CLA sedan, Mercedes Benz India hopes to give the likes of Audi and BMW sleepless nights.