Mercedes Benz is increasing investment in Vietnam by opening its first electro-dipping coating facility worldwide in Ho Chi Minh City recently.

This technically most advanced and ecologically friendly electro-dipping coating facility is worth an investment of nearly 10 million USD.

Vietnam is Mercedes-Benz’s pilot country for this type of plant, Michael Behrens, CEO and general director of Mercedes-Benz Vietnam was quoted by the Saigon Times Daily.

He said that this foreign direct investment underlines the company’s clear belief in the automotive market in Vietnam .

Located inside the Mercedes-Benz Vietnam factory in the city’s Go Vap District, the facility was built on an area of 5,000 square meters.

The two main parts of the electro-dipping coating facility are the surface pre-treatment and the actual electro-dipping coating. With top-of-the-line so called Zircobond technology using zirconium transitional elements usually seen only in spacecraft production, the line ensures that car bodies are heat-proof and corrosion-resistant. The key advantage of the facility is its extreme environmental friendliness.

The facility eliminates heavy and extremely hazardous metals such as nickel, zinc or manganese, decreases clean water usage by 40 percent, electrical energy by 40 percent and wastewater by 30 percent compared to traditional phosphate coating technology.

To finalise the whole process, each chassis traverses 16 small steps, including nine steps of phase 1 and seven steps of phase 2, in total for 10 times dipped into the tanks. The whole cycle takes 120 minutes.

According to the company, the electro-dipping coating facility of Mercedes-Benz Vietnam can paint many types of chassis and structural components. This facility will be used for the locally manufactured body frames of GLK, C-Class and E-Class. After installing the plant in Vietnam , the parent firm Daimler will further spread this technology to other countries.

Top executives of the company were present on this occasion. Peter Alexander Trettin, president & CEO of Daimler Central/Eastern Europe Africa & Asia in Stuttgart, Germany said: “We not only introduce the safest and most luxurious vehicles to Vietnam’s customers, but the most advanced ecologically friendly German technology to this country as well. Vietnam is one of our production plants worldwide. We highly appreciate this market and commit to a long-term investment.”

He said this facility is also a significant investment by Mercedes-Benz. “Therefore, this facility is also a symbol for our long term commitment to this market. We strongly believe in the further development of the economy in Vietnam, as well as the growing automotive market here as well as in the South East Asian region.”

Under pressure from a decreasing tax for imported cars from now to 2018, some manufacturers are moving their investment to other countries in the region. “We stay,” stated Michael Behrens, saying: “As opposed to other luxury brands who only import, we are a true corporate citizen of Vietnam , bringing ecological, technical benefits to our host country. No other manufacturer uses this type of ecologically friendly painting facility in Vietnam . We are pioneer once again.”

Mercedes-Benz is the only luxury manufacturer to partially assemble vehicles in Vietnam. It has been certified and proven as a top quality factory within the Daimler family. It is a responsible brand in the luxury segment and among the top tax-payers in HCM City.-VNA