Mercedes-Benz USA's vans division announced the opening of a new marshalling yard located in the Ladson area of North Charleston, South Carolina, according to a June 25 news release. An investment of $53 million USD will go toward new infrastructure, IT developments, and overall operational restructuring. Mercedes-Benz USA President & CEO, Dimitris Psillakis joined Mercedes-Benz USA's vans Vice President and Managing Director Nicolette Lambrechts, and Mercedes-Benz Vans Charleston Deputy to the CEO and Head of Paint Production and Maintenance Mark Allen, to mark the milestone and unveil the new marshalling yard.
Mercedes-Benz USA committed their investment into the improvements and enhancements of the new marshalling yard. The OEM has contracted with Auto Warehousing Co., who will be fully responsible for all vehicle movements from start to finish, streamlining the overall handover process. Additionally, Mercedes-Benz USA will now utilize a new logistics management IT system, in line with Mercedes-Benz passenger car operations, to provide customized software that allows for quick and accurate inventory tracking.
The new marshalling yard will be used as a holding and staging area for finished vehicles coming from the production facility, also located in North Charleston. Overall, the marshalling yard will include a 50 acre parcel, 30 carrier loading lanes, 50 EV charging stations, three inspection lanes, a new workshop with 22 full-size van inspection and prep stations, a full-size van wash, and an all-new office building. The company says these enhancements will streamline operations for better dealer and customer service delivery, as well as overall purchase experience.
The facility in North Charleston has been up and running since 2018, following a two-year construction period. The factory expanded upon the existing Mercedes-Benz Vans assembly plant with additional facilities, including a body shop, paint shop, and final assembly. The company company says the facility is an integral part of the Mercedes-Benz global vans production network. The new marshalling yard underscores the company's commitment to the United States market and helps best position operations for future growth with sales for Q1 up 55% YTD for a total of 11,659 vans sold YTD in 2021, the news release stated.
The company also plans to assemble the eSprinter in North Charleston starting in the second half of 2023.