STUTTGART, Germany—After suspending production for a short time due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Mercedes-Benz has successfully restarted production at its assembly plants worldwide.
On April 20, the engine and component plants in Untertürkheim, Hamburg and Berlin, Germany, gradually recommenced production first, followed by the Mercedes-Benz car plants in Bremen and Sindelfingen, Germany, on April 27. On May 4, the Mercedes-Benz car plant in Rastatt, Germany, also restarted.
Engine plants in Kölleda and Arnstadt, Germany, as well as selected international car plants, restarted production on a step-by-step basis so that ongoing developments can be taken into account. These include the plants in Sebes, Romania, and Kecskemét, Hungary.
The automaker’s assembly plant in Tuscaloosa, AL, resumed production April 27, only to suspend production again for a week due to a shortage of parts supplied from Mexico. The factory will schedule makeup production for June 29 through July 1, a week that the factory had been slated for a summer shutdown. The facility assembles GLS and GLE sport-utility vehicles.
Due to high demand, the company’s battery assembly plant in Kamenz, Germany, continued to operate during the suspension of production on a two-shift basis. The shifts were strictly segregated and extensive safety measures were put in place for employees.
To protect employees, the company has taken precautions to prevent infection and has agreed on a comprehensive package of measures with the General Works Council. These include hygiene and cleaning standards, regulations to maintain a minimum safety distance of 1.5 meters, and the use of masks covering mouth and nose in production.
“Together with the whole team, I am glad that we are gradually restarting our production in a coordinated manner,” says Jörg Burzer, a member of the Board of Management of Mercedes-Benz AG. “Flexibility is what counts here: The flexibility of our plants is one of our focal strategic topics in production, and it helps us in this restarting phase now. Our first priority is to contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic and to provide a safe working environment for our employees, suppliers and service providers. We are producing in compliance with extensive safety measures and we are increasing our production step by step.”