VANCE, Ala. — Mercedes-Benz's U.S. assembly plant transformed the Deep South's industrial base when it opened here 25 years ago. Now, the 6-million-square-foot manufacturing juggernaut is being reinvented for another new automotive era.
Mercedes this week set the stage for the U.S. mass production of luxury electric vehicles. The Alabama plant will be key to Mercedes' intention to take the fight to EV kingpin Tesla. The German powerhouse plans to plow more than $46 billion this decade into developing an armada of electric sedans, crossovers and vans.
Vance, already a global export hub, could pump out more than 100,000 EVs next year: Production of the EQS full-size SUV should begin in June, while EQE midsize crossover assembly will start in October.