Mercedes Benz S400 BlueHybrid
Next year's arrival of the S400 BlueHybrid appears to be just the first stage of a massive move to hybridazition of the brand's lineup. The ML450 is scheduled to get a Two-Mode hybrid late next year, pending resolution of issues with battery supplier Cobasys. A new generation of the high-volume mid-sized E-class arrives sometime in 2009 and Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche reportedly told media in Paris last week that it, too, will get the hybrid treatment. The smaller C-Class that debuted in 2007 gets a refresh in 2011 that is also expected to add an electric motor into the drivetrain package. The C and E are both likely to use the smaller, less expensive mild hybrid system that goes into the S rather than the larger Two-Mode. Finally, Zetsche had good news for EV fans when he said the company expects to be producing 12-15,000 electric Smarts per year starting in 2012.
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