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2014-05-16 09:24

PRIDE OF EAST LONDON: The first W205 C-Class rolls off the production line at Mercedes-Benz South Africa’s East London facility in May 2014. Image: Mercedes-Benz

  • Mercedes-Benz C-Class - pride of East London
  • Boost to the economy
  • Benchmark inSA auto industry
  • Increased production capacity

EAST LONDON, Eastern Cape - Mercedes-Benz SA is hailing its new W205 C-Class “the pride of East London” as local production of its next-generation sedan commences for local and export markets.

Mercedes-Benz believes its next C-Class will overtake sales figures of its predecessor.


Divisional board member of Mercedes-Benz Cars and production and supply chain management Markus Schäfer said: "The new C-class is a win for Mercedes SA and our East London factory. This factory is an important element of our highly flexible production network for our highest-volume model.

"With the new C-Class we're taking automotive production in South Africa to the next level - also with regard to an innovative portfolio of technologies."

An increase in capacity has had a ripple effect on the contribution that MBSA can make directly and through the component supply sector to the economy of the Eastern Cape and the country.

National trade and industry minister Rob Davies said: "This production launch is indicative of Mercedes-Benz SA's continued drive to produce high-quality products and a supportive investment environment. The economic benefit arising out of the W205 project will continue to benefit both the regional Eastern Cape economy as well as the SA economy in years to come."


MBSA reports that more than 550 jobs have been created at its factory and 10suppliers added to the tally ofjobs created due to C-Clss production.

MBSA CEO and vice-president of manufacturing Arno van der Merwe said: "We will bring 10 new production technologies to East London in our body shop. Several new processes include localised components and processes such as aluminium skin panels. complex laser welding, roll forming for complex structural profiles, advanced rear axle carriage assembly, aluminium pre-treatment and natural fibre pressings."

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