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New Delhi, Sept 2

DAIMLER Chrysler India on Thursday said it plans to launch its premium commercial vehicle, Actros, in India early next year and will also introduce the next generation S-Class Mercedes in the latter half of 2006.

"We are at the end of the homologation stage and will deliver the first Actros in early 2006. This would be in the completely built unit (CBU) format," the President of Daimler Chrysler India, Mr Hans Michael Huber, said here on the sidelines of the SIAM Annual Convention.

He said the company sold 80,000 units of Actros globally last year, with the major markets being Europe and West Asia. The Actros trucks will compete with Volvo in India. According to sources, Daimler Chrysler would be coming out with two models of the Actros - a 33-tonner and a 40-tonner.

On the pricing of the new Mercedes S-Class, Mr Huber said that it would be priced above the present S-Class price band of Rs 60-65 lakh.

This year the company has so far sold about 125 S-Class cars, which are priced at about Rs 65 lakh.

Meanwhile, company officials said that Daimler Chrysler expects to buy auto parts worth 85 million euros from India in the current calendar year.

In 2004, the company sourced parts worth 79 million euros from the country.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated September 3, 2005)
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