"Everyone wants to be Mercedes-Benz," said Ernst Lieb, CEO of Mercedes-Benz USA. Either Mercedes is getting a little cocky or they are just that confident about their plans for the future. They have already announced plans to build a new generation B-Class for the 2012 model year and now they have confirmed that not only will the hatchback version come to the U.S. market, but so will a coupe, a crossover, and a sedan version. These will be the first FWD models Mercedes will sell on the US market.
The next B-class will also be seeing some changes under the hood. Mercedes has taken advantage of the Renault-Nissan partnership and has had them develop new three- and four-cylinder engines with turbos and gasoline direct injection. The four-cylinder engines will be the first to see U.S. soil in a Mercedes product since no other four-cylinder Mercedes has been offered in the States.
In a previous interview, Dr. Joachim Schmidt, head of sales and marketing at Mercedes-Benz, commented on the upcoming A- and B-Class models, noting that, "In the next couple of years, we will launch additional cars where we don’t currently have predecessors. Our current A-Class and B-Class will be replaced by a new platform for four totally different cars defining new segments for Mercedes." He added, “If you want young customers, you need to have a brand that is sexy and sporty. The reason we didn’t get this customer before was, in my opinion, not a brand issue, but a product issue." We can only guess that they are just that confident in their future products.