Mercedes-Benz plans to stop building the EQS SUV in the United States and will shift production to Germany.
The luxurious battery-electric SUV is currently being produced at the brand’s facility in Vance, Alabama. It constitutes approximately 7% of the factory’s annual capacity of 305,000 vehicles. Between January and September, Mercedes-Benz sold 7,086 EQS SUVs in the United States. In the latter half of the decade, production will be relocated to Bremen, Germany. Filling the gap left by the EQS SUV in Alabama will be an electric version of the GLC.
Described as a ‘cash cow’ by an unnamed company source, this new model is expected to begin production in the first quarter of 2026. While speaking with Auto News, AutoForecast Solutions vice president Sam Fiorani suggested that as many as 50,000 GLC EVs could be manufactured in the first year.
This move will help optimize capacity at the Alabama factory and, more importantly, is projected to achieve higher sales numbers than the EQS SUV. Additionally, local U.S. production will make it eligible for tax credits under the Inflation Reduction Act.
AutoForecast Solutions also points out that the GLC EV will contribute to enhanced profitability through improved economies of scale. It will serve as a replacement for the EQC crossover that was determined to have far too limited of a range to be sold in the United States.
Mercedes provided U.S. dealers with their first glimpse of the GLC EV last year. It is expected to have around 300 miles (482 km) of range and will have a more rounded design than the internal combustion model. It could prove to be the firm’s best-selling EV in the U.S.
The carmaker’s factory in Bremen, Germany currently builds the C-Class, E-Class, GLC, and EQE, and shifting production of the EQS SUV to the site will add about 20,000 vehicles annually to the line.