Mercedes-Benz, Dieter Zetsche and Palast OrchesterEnlarge Photo
This will see the German exec continue his role as CEO of both Daimler and its subsidiary Mercedes-Benz until the end of 2016.
Though Zetsche’s performance of late hasn’t matched that of his rivals at Audi and BMW (Daimler’s earnings in 2012 dropped 10 percent on the previous year), the company’s supervisory board is keen to maintain continuity at the top executive level during a time of economic instability in Europe and many other parts of the globe.
Under the 59-year-old exec's lead, Daimler failed to capitalize on the growing luxury market in China to the same extent that Audi and BMW has. The company also discontinued its Maybach line during this time.
Daimler has since gone on to establish a new electric car brand in China, Denza, in partnership with local automaker BYD, and more recently it bought a 12-percent stake in another Chinese automaker, BAIC.
Zetsche, who has been a board member at Daimler since 1998 and its Chairman since 2006, has also pledged to turn Mercedes-Benz into the world’s largest luxury automaker by 2020 with sales of two million vehicles annually. Last year Mercedes sold 1,320,097 vehicles worldwide.
Some bright spots on the horizon for Daimler is the all-new 2014 Mercedes-Benz S Class, which launches this year, as well as its new family of small cars that is much more stylish and premium than its previous offerings in this segment.
Another top executive at Daimler, R&D chief Thomas Weber, had his contract extended by three years as well.