In total, Daimler has invested €1.4 billion in production of the new generation of Mercedes-Benz cars: €800 million for construction of the Kecskemét plant and €600 million for expansion of the Rastatt plant. The joint production of the B-Class in Rastatt and in Kecskemét enables flexible and optimum management of both plants’ capacity utilization. This volume flexibility is a key factor of the economic efficiency of the production network. In addition, the joint architecture of the new generation of compact cars ensures complete type flexibility in production: in principle, all models at the location can be produced on the same assembly line, in all variants of the product range and in any sequence.
The production network also includes the efficient logistical link between the two plants, which are part of the Daimler Rail Net network. The recently opened east-west rail link supplements the existing north-south links between the powertrain and vehicle plants in Germany. In particular, body parts, engines, transmission systems and other components are delivered from the German locations to Kecskemét by rail. From 2013, most of the completed vehicles will also be transported by rail in the opposite direction. Overall, when completed, this will save up to 60,000 tons of CO2 per year.