Daimler AG will decide by January whether to shift some C-class passenger-car production to its U.S. factory in Vance, Alabama.
“It's no secret that a decision for the new C class has to be made in the near future,” and that includes expansion of production, Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche said during a briefing with journalists in New York Thursday.
Zetsche said the decision would be based on currency rates and whether the dollar will remain weak against the euro.
U.S. production of the C class, the biggest-selling Mercedes-Benz vehicle in the United States, would help shield Daimler against further currency swings. Reports from Germany say Daimler would build about 80,000 C-class cars annually in Alabama.
Moving the C class to Vance would require an additional investment to expand the factory and for new tooling, said a spokeswoman for the company. The next-generation C class is due is 2013.
The Vance factory builds the M-, GL- and R-class models. The plant has built 83,461 units to date in 2009. For all of 2008, it built 152,500.