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First hybrid rolls off line at Daimler plant in Hungary

Germanyʼs Daimler completed the production of the first hybrid car at its plant in Kecskemét (about 82 km southeast of Budapest) on Tuesday, according to a report by state news wire MTI.

The vehicle, a silver CLA 250 e Coupe, was driven off the production line by Innovation and Technology Minister László Palkovics. The car will be delivered to a Hungarian owner.

The Mercedes-Benz plant in Kecskemét will make two plug-in hybrid models: the CLA 250 e Coupe and the CLA 250 e Shooting Brake.

The addition of the two models to the compact plug-in hybrid range brings the total number to six.

By year-end the portfolio will include five fully electric and 20 plug-in hybrid models, Mercedes-Benz Hungária managing director Reinhard Münster said.

In 10 years, electric and hybrid models are expected to account for 15% of car sales, he added.

Mercedes-Benz Manufacturing Hungary managing director Christian Wolff said production at the plant in Kecskemét will be ramped up to three shifts in the first week of August.

Production at the plant stopped between March 20 and April 28 because of a lockdown to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus. The plant will be shut down between August 17 and 23 for routine maintenance.

Daimler employs some 4,400 people at the Mercedes-Benz base in Kecskemét. The plant turned out 190,000 cars last year, launching the production of three new models.