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Mercedes-Benz Cars Builds Electric Battery Factory in Tuscaloosa, Alabama

Mercedes-Benz Cars is putting the pedal to the metal in the U.S. when it comes to its electric car initiative, with the start of the construction on its new battery factory that will be built near its vehicle production site in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

The new battery plant will provide batteries for future electric SUV under the product and technology brand EQ.

Markus Schäfer, Member of the Divisional Board of Mercedes-Benz Cars, Production and Supply Chain said, "The widely export oriented Mercedes-Benz plant in Tuscaloosa is a high-tech production facility with a successful history and an exciting future in terms of our brand in the United States. We aim to play a pioneering role in the development of e-mobility and are well prepared to accomplish this mission. One year ago, we have announced $1 billion investment in Tuscaloosa mostly for the production of electric SUVs and a battery plant. We are bringing electric mobility for Mercedes-Benz to the United States. Around the globe, we are preparing six sites for production of EQ models and our battery network will consist of eight factories."

The new production site for batteries - along with the new Consolidation Center - is located seven miles from the Mercedes-Benz Cars vehicle production site in Tuscaloosa. The Consolidation Center, also announced as part of the 2017 investment announcement, will consist of three major areas, including the body parts preparation area, the assembly parts preparation area and the empties storage. It is expected to be operational in 2019.

More than $6 billion has already been invested in the Tuscaloosa plant since 1995. The additional $1 billion will help Mercedes-Benz Cars expand its industrial footprint in the region, most of which is slated for the electric initiative. It is expected that, once completed, these investments will create more than 600 additional jobs in Alabama.

Prior to the groundbreaking ceremony, Mercedes-Benz U.S. International, Inc. celebrated the start of production of the first new Mercedes-Benz GLE. Tuscaloosa has served as the traditional production site for SUVs since 1997. This factory supplies the current GLE, GLE Coupé and GLS models to customers worldwide.

According to company officials, these models are made exclusively in Alabama and two thirds of them are exported to almost every country in the world.

"Just as Mercedes helped put our state on the cutting-edge of automotive manufacturing, Alabama will help put Mercedes on the cutting-edge of electric vehicle development," Governor Kay Ivey said. "We continuously strive to reaffirm the 'Made in Alabama' brand as one of excellence. So, naturally, there is no better state for Mercedes to build upon their world-class brand of excellence than right here in Alabama."

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