Zetsche: Mercedes-Benz will do ‘unthinkable’ to make company greener, 4-cylinder S-Class on the way

2010 Mercedes-Benz S-Class

Green is the new black – well not exactly but its extremely important for automakers to work into their vehicle designs in today”s increasingly environmentally conscious auto market, and Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche seems to be well aware of this. At the Paris Auto Show last week, Zetsche announced that the Mercedes S-class luxury sedan will be sold with a four-cylinder engine for the first time in the brand”s 60 year history.

“Some might call this sacrilege – we call it progress,” Zetsche told reporters at the press presentation of the S class. “We want to be efficiency world champions … and we will be.”

Zetsche”s statement comes after BMW CEO Norbert Reithofer said that he plans to cut the company”s three-brand fleet CO2 emissions by at least 25% by 2020. Fuel-efficiency features are abound in late model European cars, as European regulations set to take effect in 2012 will require higher levels of efficiency.

Zetsche did not give a specific target for his auto group which also includes Smart and Maybach. The S-class”s new engine is a 2.2-liter diesel that uses 5.7 liters of fuel per 100 kilometers with a CP2 emission level of 149 grams. The greener variant of the S-class is available to order in Europe with prices starting at 71,876 euros ($98,320).

– By: Stephen Calogera

Source: Automotive News