Colin-on-Cars – New dawn for Daimler Trucks

Michael Dietz

Daimler Trucks & Buses Southern Africa (DTBSA) will operate as a wholly independent business operation from December 01 as a dedicated commercial vehicle operation with its own finance company – and is investing R1-billion in doing so.

Mercedes-Benz will be a separate company looking after passenger cars and vans but manufacturing and assembly for both will remain at the East London production plant.

The separation is in line with the global direction being taken by Daimler AG and Michael Dietz, President and CEO DTBSA says: “This is indeed a massive turning point for us as DTBSA and a huge investment for the Southern Africa market. We have done some ground-breaking changes previously, like the establishment of DTBSA as a legal entity in 2019 and more recently the founding of our very own captive financial mobility services, Daimler Trucks Financial  Services (DTFS).

“I firmly believe the new set-up promotes the necessary focus into our core business, creates favourable conditions for us to be more competitive and accelerates the development of key technologies for us to continue to provide cutting-edge products and services to fulfil the special needs of our customers.

“It is without a doubt this independence is fully aligned with our growth strategy and further strengthens our foothold within the markets we operate in. As we gear up to a smooth transition, our commitment for all who keep Africa moving remains unchanged.”

An investment of up to R1-billion has been made available to ensure continuity in operation, adequate resources, and suitable working infrastructure for the DTBSA business. This new set-up will comprise of the Sales and Marketing, Customer Service & Parts (CSP), Own Retail, Manufacturing Plant, Value-added services which include; TruckStore, FleetBoard, Mercedes-Benz Uptime, Service24h, TruckParts, and FUSO Value Parts (FVP).

Building of a new corporate home in Centurion, Pretoria is scheduled to start soon and bring together all the facets of the new company with the exception of the manufacturing arm, which will will have the same level of access to the key production areas such as harbor, depots/storage centres, testing ground, and Training Academy as Mercedes-Benz.

Looking to the future, Dietz confirmed the fully electric eCanter was undergoing testing in real world operating scenarios with selected customers but added DTBSA would offer a balanced portfolio of product within the expanding electric vehicle sphere with combustion engines offered whenever a conventional powertrain is a key requirement.

Hanif Ahmed, the Chief Financial Officer for DTBSA added: “The aim is to provide unrivalled and dynamic products for our customers along with holistic solutions for both dealers and customers, all of which is driven by service delivery.”

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