By Andrew Ganz
Tuesday, May 1st, 2012 @ 8:53 am
Mercedes-Benz's global sales chief says that he hopes the automaker's well-established United States dealers will look to the rapidly-growing Chinese market for their next showrooms.

The automaker's top sales executive, Joachim Schmidt, told Automotive News that the automaker is opening a new showroom in China every week, a pace dealers in other markets cannot fathom. The Chinese market is so strong, in fact, that Mercedes' sport-oriented AMG division opened its first standalone showroom in Beijing earlier this month.

While Mercedes-Benz itself would like to get in on the action with a few corporate-owned dealerships, Schmidt says that regulatory roadblocks are unsurmountable for the German automaker.

"It is too strange, and it is quite complicated. That's why we decided not to become a dealer."

However, the automaker's most successful North American dealers are finding similar challenges.

Penske Automotive Group CEO Roger Penske told the industry journal that his firm, the second-largest dealership in North America, is having a hard time making a business case in China.

"We haven't found the scale," Penske said. "Mercedes would be a great brand to go to China with, or any luxury brand for that matter, but at the moment we have not found it would meet our capital."

Here at Leftlane, we believe the contributions of the community are just as valuable as those of our staff. The Web, at its core, is a medium for information sharing and communication. We strive to provide good information, but without you—the community member—there is no communication. Read More>>