PARIS -- Dieter Zetsche has big plans to put Mercedes-Benz into the premium pickup business, and he is relying on Renault-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn to help make it happen.
In one of several global product-sharing ventures between Daimler and Renault-Nissan, Mercedes will obtain a new midsize pickup built by Renault in Argentina. It will share a Nissan platform with Nissan and Renault pickups.
"Nissan has over 80 years of experience developing and producing pickup trucks," said Zetsche, CEO of Daimler. "We are building on this knowledge and expertise."
It is a significant product initiative for Mercedes, Zetsche said as Ghosn sat next to him during a joint press conference at the Paris auto show. Zetsche believes that pickup trucks are no longer just for working people, farmers and contractors but are now ready for a role in the premium end of the auto market.
"The midsized pickup segment is not only booming; it is at the beginning of a major transformation," he said. "More and more customers are looking for pickup trucks with carlike specifications. We will be a driving force in this change."