A major part of this order, about 70 vans, have already made their way out of production and to Dalian Wanda Group where they are to be used to ferry international movie personalities to and fro.
These movie stars will include the likes of Catherine Zeta-Jones, Nicole Kidman, Leonardo DiCaprio and Jet Li who are in attendance for “Wanda Star-Shining Night.”
It was due to the exclusive service and quality of products offered by the company, that an entire fleet of Mercedes Benz Viano vans were selected for this purpose. The Chinese counterparts are aware of the comforts offered by these vans besides their exclusive on board safety features.
A new product development center was also opened in March this year wherein the company will be able to develop and produce vans exclusively designed for the needs of Chinese customers. These Viano vans are an up market version of Mercedes Benz Vito with better quality material, side mirror mounted turn signals and are comfortable 8 passenger carriers.
Majority of Mercedes-Benz Viano 3.0L already delivered to Chinese consortium
First vehicles serve as exclusive shuttles for international movie stars
A major order is giving a further boost to Daimler AG’s van business in China. Daimler’s van joint venture Fujian Benz Automotive Co. (FBAC) has secured an order by the Dalian Wanda Group comprising 85 Mercedes-Benz Viano 3.0L vans. In the framework of a hand-over ceremony, the Chinese conglomerate has already taken over 70 of the ordered vehicles and has sent some of them on an exclusive shuttle assignment for international movie stars such as Catherine Zeta-Jones and Leonardo diCaprio on the occasion of the “Wanda Star-Shining Night.”
“The decision to have a fleet of Mercedes-Benz Viano vans is a clear indication of the trust that the Dalian Wanda Group places in Fujian Benz Automotive, our products and services. Our Chinese customers value the comfort and safety of these locally produced vehicles,” says René Reif, CEO of FBAC.
“Thanks to our product development center, which opened in March, we will be able to tailor our vans even more closely to the needs of our Chinese customers in the future,” assures Reif.
The major order is further evidence of the positive business development of Mercedes-Benz Vans in China. In the third quarter of 2013, the division posted a significant growth in sales of 53 percent, for a total of 3,500 units. In the first nine months of the year, van sales even climbed by 61 percent in China to around 9,150 vehicles. A major advantage for Daimler is that Mercedes-Benz is still the only foreign premium automobile manufacturer with its own van production in China.
Mercedes-Benz Vianos cut a fine figure as they transport VIPs
More than 30 of the newly delivered vehicles already made their first major appearance at the opening of the Qingdao Oriental Movie Metropolis. This complex, built and operated by the Wanda Group, is one of the largest movie industry compounds in the world. Its opening attracted leading figures from the Chinese government’s agencies for radio, film and television and the city government of Qingdao as well as from Warner Brothers and Universal Studios. The event also attracted famous movie stars from around the world. As the official transportation for VIPs, the Mercedes-Benz Viano vans cut a fine figure at the “Wanda Star-Shining Night.” Their exclusive shuttle service to the red carpet impressed international movie stars – among others Catherine Zeta-Jones, Nicole Kidman, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Jet Li.
About Fujian Benz Automotive Co.
The Daimler joint venture Fujian Benz Automotive Corporation (FBAC) has produced the Vito and Viano since 2010 and a bus version of the Sprinter in Fuzhou, China, since 2011. After a construction period of only two years, the joint venture’s new product development center was officially opened in March 2013. This facility is Mercedes-Benz Vans’ first product development center outside of Germany. Among other things, it will be responsible for product development and prototype construction as well as the testing of components and whole vehicles — all in the spirit of the global growth strategy “Vans goes global.”