KECSKEMET, Hungary, March 29, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Daimler AG sees Mercedes-Benz well on its way to achieving the goals of its 2020 growth strategy and reclaiming the number one position in the premium segment by the end of the decade. (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20080409/NYW017LOGO ) Dr. Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars, stated to investors and analysts at the opening of the new plant in Kecskemet, Hungary: "Mercedes-Benz is consistently implementing its growth strategy. We have a fighting spirit in the entire organization to become the leading manufacturer of premium automobiles once again also in terms of unit sales. We are aware of the challenges and we will master them." Following the successful year 2011, in which the division posted new records for unit sales, revenue and earnings, the year 2012 has also started well. Mercedes-Benz Cars is expected to report the best unit sales it has ever achieved in a first quarter. With its Mercedes-Benz 2020 growth strategy, the Mercedes-Benz Cars division intends to occupy the number one position in the premium segment not only in terms of brand, products and profitability, but also of unit sales. Zetsche left no doubt that all efforts are being made to achieve those four goals, with the support of a large number of activities. With regards to the Mercedes-Benz brand, Daimler is further strengthening its core brand values of fascination, perfection and responsibility to broaden the customer base and address younger customers. This will be facilitated by the five new models of the new-generation compact car, and also by highly emotive vehicles such as the CLS Shooting Brake. With products, the automobile portfolio is being rejuvenated and a third product offensive has been started with 10 new derivatives for which no predecessor models exist to be launched by the year 2015. For example, the luxury segment will be enlarged by expanding the S-Class range from three to six models with highly profitable derivatives. The planned activities also include further reductions in fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. "We are convinced that 'cool' and 'green' can peacefully coexist in our garages," said Zetsche. Mercedes-Benz Cars will be able to reduce the average CO2 emissions of its automobiles sold in the European Union from today's 150 grams per kilometer to 125 g/km by the year 2016. The new A-Class will start with emissions of 99 g/km.