Daimler, Hyundai ramp up mobility projects in Korea | Auto Finance News | Auto Finance News

Daimler, Hyundai ramp up mobility projects in Korea

Michaela Handrek-Rehle/Bloomberg

Mercedes-Benz and Hyundai are setting their sights on Korea for expanded mobility solutions, the two companies announced separately this week.

Daimler Mobility AG — which, like Mercedes-Benz, is a subsidiary of Daimler AG — is expanding its footprint with the creation of Mercedes-Benz Mobility Korea (MBMK). Long-time Daimler executive Guillaume Fritz was appointed managing director of the new division.

MBMK’s inaugural service is a long-term car rental service that bundles insurance and services such as delivery, parts and labor. The company also offers an optional consumable replacement program that covers engine oil, brake oil, air cleaners and interior filters. Rental terms start at 36 months and can be extended to up to 60 months.

The program differs from a traditional leasing model insofar as it allows customers to have “no obligation to pay acquisition, registration or automobile taxes” and removes insurance liability from the driver, according to the company’s Korean website. In addition, MBMK’s long-term rental service positions itself as a solution for corporations looking to better manage liquid assets and “experience new cars every three to four years.” Monthly rates range from at ₩666,001 ($561.93) to ₩1,806,399 ($1,524.12).

Separately, Hyundai Motors announced plans to invest ₩41 trillion ($34.65 billion) into mobility initiatives by 2025, according to a report by Reuters. The OEM’s announcement in Seoul comes on the heels of a partnership with Dublin-based Aptiv that was announced in September. The two companies each will have a 50% ownership in a $4 billion joint venture intended to promote “the development of production-ready autonomous driving systems for Lever 4 and Level 5 self-driving technologies,” according to company release.

The South Korean government also announced that it plans on investing ₩1.7 trillion ($1.4 billion) in autonomous technology from 2021 to 2027, with the expectation that Hyundai launch a nationwide AV service to commercial fleet customers by 2024.

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