Mercedes steps up its electric car production plans

It plans to meet its EV target 3 years early.

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When Mercedes-Benz parent Daimler unveiled plans to have at least six electric cars on the market within a decade, it was clearly being conservative. The automaker has announced that it's accelerating those plans, with over 10 EVs on the road by 2022 -- 3 years ahead of the target it set half a year ago. Daimler will pour €10 billion (about $10.8 billion) into the initiative to make it a reality. The company wants to shape the car industry "from the forefront," according to the firm's Manfred Bischoff, and that means an aggressive strategy.

Why such a quick change of heart, though? The car giant isn't specific, but there are a few likely motivations. Competition is certainly the elephant in the room. Mercedes hasn't been shy about gunning after Tesla's upscale EV line, and it doesn't want to risk handing the market to its American rival by being overly cautious. It has to worry about its German counterparts, too. And even if there weren't any market factors at work, Mercedes still has to worry about growing widening diesel emissions scandals and increasing government pressure to reduce pollution. Simply put, the advantages of quickly embracing EVs are easily outweighing the drawbacks.

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