The Daimler Group is at the forefront with both of these topics, and has a first-class starting point for sustained innovation and profitable growth. With the Mercedes-Benz 2020 growth strategy, the Mercedes-Benz brand aims to reclaim its position as the leading manufacturer of premium automobiles also in terms of unit sales. Daimler Trucks intends to defend its first place with its Global Excellence strategy. And the other divisions have similar plans to defend or take over the top position.
In 2012 and 2013 alone, the Group will invest euro 10.9 billion in research and development and euro 10.6 billion in property, plant and equipment. Daimler will extend its leading role with green technologies. Some examples are the further development of the automobile into a zero-emission vehicle and the digital networking of automobiles to control traffic and reduce congestion.
With internal-combustion engines, the CO2 emissions of Mercedes-Benz Cars' fleet has been reduced within two vehicle generations by 35% to an average of 150 grams per kilometer. A fleet average of 125 g/km is to be achieved by 2016.
Mercedes-Benz already sells the world's most economical full-size sedan: the E 300 BlueTEC Hybrid with consumption of 4.2 liters of diesel fuel per 100 kilometers. Starting this summer, the Daimler Group will be the first premium manufacturer to supply an electric car for all: the e-smart.Affirmation of medium-term goals At the event in Berlin, Zetsche affirmed Daimler's medium-term targets for unit sales and earnings: In the year 2015, more than 1.6 million Mercedes-Benz passenger cars, over half a million trucks, more than 400,000 vans and approximately 42,000 buses are to be sold. As of the year 2013, Daimler aims to achieve an average return on sales in its automotive business of 9%. The targets for the divisions are a return on sales of 10% for Mercedes-Benz Cars, 8% for Daimler Trucks, 9% for Mercedes-Benz Vans and 6% for Daimler Buses, and a return on equity of 17% for Daimler Financial Services. Mercedes-Benz Vans and Daimler Financial Services already achieved or surpassed their targets in 2011.