Mercedes-Benz is planning to assemble its EQ electric vehicles in Malaysia soon. This was revealed by the Mercedes-Benz Malaysia (MBM) President and CEO Sagree Sardien during the Malaysian launch of the Mercedes EQE 350+ executive sedan earlier this week.
However, Sagree did not provide any further detail regarding the exact model or release timeline aside from the fact that it will take place sometime in 2023. In many ways, it is a natural progression for the EQ family which has been given a rapid rollout into our market.
Mercedes-Benz originally planned to launch the first Mercedes EQ model in Malaysia with EQC SUV way back in 2020. The move faced significant delay due to the massive global pandemic but the company was finally able to kick start its full electrification era over here in March by launching the EQA 250 SUV.
From then on, the Mercedes EQ line-up in Malaysia began to expand further with the introduction of the flagship EQS 450+ luxury sedan in July alongside two more SUVs, the EQB 350 4MATIC and EQC 400 4MATIC. MBM then nicely finishes off this year with the EQE 350+ a few days ago.
At this moment, all of these EQ models came directly from Germany and having them assembled locally may allow the EVs to have a slightly lower price tag. Case in point: the latest locally assembled models, the 2022 C 200 Avantgarde Line and C 300 AMG Line which were released into the market in August costs around RM12,000 to RM17,000 lower than their CBU counterparts.
First opened in 2004, more than 100,000 vehicles have rolled out from the Mercedes-Benz Pekan Plant in Pahang. Aside from catering for the Malaysian market, the facility also exported the left-hand drive model to the Philippines.
It goes without saying that Mercedes-Benz’s plan to assemble EQ models at its Pekan facility is a positive sign for the rapidly booming EV industry in Malaysia. The move is right on the trail of Volvo who is already assembling both of its current EV offerings in our market, the XC40 Recharge and the newly launched C40 Recharge at its facility in Shah Alam.
During the launch of the Ora Good Cat EV last month, Great Wall Motor also announced its commitment to kick off its local assembly operations in 2023. Even Proton is already in active discussion to locally assemble EVs in Malaysia although the local outfit does have an even bigger aim which is to produce its own EV by 2027.