Mercedes-Benz Selects AM General to Build R Class
We all know Mercedes-Benz has a factory in Tuscaloosa, Alabama (Mercedes-Benz U.S. International, Inc., MBUSI), and it is building many Mercedes-Benz SUV models for worldwide markets, including the M-Class and GL-Class, also the minivan-shaped R-Class.
Recently the Alabama factory was given more responsibility – to manufacture the current W205 C- Class and also the upcoming GLE-Class. It looks like the factory does not have enough capacity to handle the increased production tasks, therefore today Mercedes-Benz has decided to move the production of the current R-Class, which is an aging model only sold in China now, to AM General’s factory in Mishawaka, Indiana.
Perhaps you haven’t heard of the name of “AM General”, but you may know HMMWV – the vehicle you frequently see in US army. AM General designs and builds the HMMWV. This decision by Mercedes is actually a win-win case: it lets the Alabama plant focus more on the popular, core models, while benefits the local job market in Mishawaka, Indiana. The R-Class production in AM General factory will begin in this summer.
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AM General Selected As Mercedes-Benz First and Only Contract Manufacturer of Vehicles in the United States
SOUTH BEND, Ind., Jan. 27, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — AM General LLC and Mercedes-Benz U.S. International, Inc., today announced that Mercedes-Benz has selected AM General to manufacture the Mercedes-Benz R-Class luxury vehicle at AM General’s world-class 675,000 square-foot Commercial Assembly Plant. Because of increasing demand for its Sport Utility Vehicles and the need for greater production capacity in the U.S, Mercedes-Benz is moving production of the R-Class from its Tuscaloosa, Ala. plant to AM General’s Commercial Assembly Plant in Mishawaka, Ind.
Under the multi-year agreement, AM General becomes Mercedes-Benz’s first and only contract manufacturing operator in the U.S. AM General anticipates R-Class vehicles will start rolling off its production lines this summer and will hire and train hundreds of new workers in order to prepare for R-class production.
“AM General is pleased to have been selected by Mercedes-Benz to build this vehicle at our world-class commercial vehicle facility in Mishawaka. We look forward to a long term relationship with Mercedes and expanding our services to the U.S. and global auto industry,” said Charlie Hall, President and CEO of AM General.
AM General’s Commercial Assembly Plant is a full service manufacturing and support facility that utilizes state-of-the-art robotic welding, painting and assembly techniques coupled with a lean manufacturing culture and highly skilled workforce to meet the requirements of its customers.
“This is yet another example of AM General’s deep and growing commitment to the cities of Mishawaka and South Bend, the State of Indiana and our highly skilled, hardworking employees,” Hall added.
In this rapidly growing segment of its business, AM General has extensive experience as an automotive Contract Assembler and Original Equipment Manufacturer. Commercial vehicle contract assembly initiatives include work for General Motors and other Original Equipment Manufacturers. As an Original Equipment Manufacturer, AM General, through its wholly owned subsidiary Mobility Ventures LLC, designs, produces and supports the new MV-1 – the world’s first purpose-built, universally accessible vehicle which is expanding choice in transportation for families, livery and paratransit fleets.
About AM General
AM General has more than five decades of experience in two separate assembly plants meeting the changing needs of the defense and commercial automotive industries. The Company has produced more than 1.5 million vehicles, supported by its employees at major facilities in Indiana, Michigan, and Ohio, and a strong supplier base that stretches across 43 states.
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