Mercedes-Benz has dictated trends and set standards from the very beginning, and that continues to this day. It recently also announced the launch of sales of fully electric vehicles on the Serbian market, under the EQ brand, thus confirming its commitment to sustainability and the ecological future.
In 2021/2022, the company will start selling the EQA and EQC models and, in the luxury sedan segment, the EQS model. The plan for the coming years is to offer a full range of electric vehicles, announces Star Import’s managing director with pride
The global pandemic has also impacted the car market, leading to falling sales. Does Serbia differ from the rest of the world in that respect?
The previous year was like no other, with almost no sphere of life left unaffected by the pandemic. This situation, both around the world and on our markets, has impacted strongly on sales and the maintenance of cars. As a consequence, a fall of around 20 per cent has been recorded in sales of new passenger vehicles in Serbia. Signs of recovery are visible this year, but we plenty of challenges ahead of us. We are not expected to return to the level of 2019 until 2023. The Serbian car market has great potential, which can be seen in the aged fleet and in the beginning of electromobility.
How do you, at Mercedes, view the need to develop new models that will help reduce the polluting of the environment?
The issue of sustainability has been current for some time. At the global level, Mercedes-Benz has expressed its commitment to a CO2-neutral fleet of vehicles. We are definitely set to receive vehicles with various propulsion units, from classical to hybrid, electric and engines that run on fuel cell units. Part of our offer includes plug-in hybrid vehicles, which are the perfect combination of electric and conventional drive systems and represent an important step towards the development of technology for driving without emissions of exhaust fumes.
It’s important for us to focus on the most important ideas that have formed part of our brand since its creation, for the last 130 years – safety, innovation and luxury
From the Mercedes perspective, how do you see the future of the automotive industry?
The automotive industry is under constant development and has a tendency to change due to different environmental regulations and new needs for the use of vehicles. It is difficult to predict what awaits us in the coming years, but change is definitely inevitable and coming faster than we thought.
In the world of new technologies, at a time when the needs of our customers are changing constantly, it’s important for us to focus on the most important ideas that have formed part of our brand since its creation, for the last 130 years – safety, innovation and luxury. We have added the topic of sustainability to this, and that is driving our initiative to electrify, which is in full swing. Mercedes-Benz has always been, and remains, synonymous with the world’s most desirable cars.
A car rental trend currently exists in Europe. What else is trending?
The trend of renting cars has existed in Europe and around the world for a long time. The most common ways to rent a vehicle are long-term rentals lasting longer than 24 months, which are most often used by companies, and shorter ones of up to 10 days (tourists, rentals for special purposes).
That process stopped under the impact of the crisis. In our country there’s currently a noticeable trend of using vehicles on the basis of operating leases for a period of 24 to 36 months, which is particularly suitable for companies. Instead of simply buying a vehicle, today’s companies focus on the full service (financing, maintenance, registration, insurance), whilst also demanding a reduction in costs. That’s why we’ve developed our special Business Solution programme for business users, under the scope of which they can find the right mobility solution that’s in accordance with their needs.