SEOUL, Jan. 16 (Korea Bizwire) – Mercedes-Benz will launch six new vehicle models in South Korea this year while expanding local dealerships and service centers as part of efforts to further increase its market presence here, head of the company’s local unit said Monday.
Dimitris Psillakis, CEO of Mercedes-Benz Korea, said the company planned to increase the number of car dealerships to 50 from the current 42 this year, while also boosting the number of repair and service centers to 55 from the current 48.
Such a move will require up to 200 billion won (US$169 million) in new investment that will create some 1,000 new jobs, he said while meeting with reporters in Seoul.
The aggressive investment plan follows a record year for the local distributor of the luxury German vehicle.
In 2016, sales of Mercedes Benz Korea came to 56,343 cars, spiking 19.9 percent from a year earlier while the annual sales of all imported vehicles dropped 7.6 percent on-year.
The 2016 tally also marked more than 25 percent of all imported cars sold here the same year, according to earlier data from the Korea Automobile Importers and Distributors Association.
As an apparent show of gratitude, Psillakis said his company planned to provide some 4 billion won in corporate responsibility funds to be used in various community projects this year, up from 3.1 billion won in 2016.