Beijing Benz Automotive, a joint venture between Beijing Automotive Industry Holding (BAIC) and Daimler, said its sales will increase 179% year on year to roughly 50,000 units this year, and are expected to grow more than 60% next year based on 2010 figures.

Daimler will likely produce its Mercedes-Benz GLK crossover in China in 2011, said, citing Beijing News.

Beijing Benz will accelerate changes to its product line in the next few years. It has so far launched three long wheelbase E-Class models in China, along with the C180, now the best-selling domestically made C-class car. It plans to launch two more lengthened E-class and other models to further enrich its product line.

Daimler has also developed plans to invest EUR3bn (US$4.2bn) in China by 2015 to boost production of Mercedes-Benz cars in the world's biggest auto market. It aims to increase sales in the Asian country to 300,000 units a year in the next five years, compared with an estimated 120,000 units in 2010, global chief executive Dieter Zetsche said earlier.

At present, Beijing Benz has completed reconstruction of its second plant, which already works on two shifts. The company will then proceed with vehicle plant expansion and building a new engine plant.

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