American Marketer


Mercedes-Benz introduces new fire trucks at Interschutz trade fair

June 3, 2015

Mercedes-Benz new Unimog U5023 water tender Mercedes-Benz new Unimog U5023 water tender


German automaker Mercedes-Benz is using its technical capabilities to promote social good with the release of three new models of emergency fire service vehicles.

The vehicles will be on display at the Interschutz trade fair exhibition in Hanover, Germany from June 8-13, allowing guests to view the Unimog U5023 water tender, the Econic 1830 and the Zetros 2733A in person. Applying its unique technology and craftsmanship to this type of vehicle gives Mercedes-Benz the opportunity to give back to the community in a meaningful way.

"I don't quite see how this helps Mercedes-Benz build a luxury brand in the United States," said Bob Prosser, CEO of Auto World Marketing Corp, San Diego. "Does being known as a quality truck maker help the United States market appreciate Mercedes-Benz as a luxury marque and fashion/lifestyle statement?

"Personally I don't see how. Perhaps Mercedes-Benz gets away with it because it’s such an old, established, worldwide brand that it does not matter."

Mr. Prosser is not affiliated with Mercedes-Benz, but agreed to comment as an industry expert.

Mercedes-Benz was unable to respond by press deadline.

Fight fire with fire

Interschutz is an international exhibition of emergency service technology, including rescue and firefighting vehicles such as Mercedes-Benz’s new models. This year approximately 1,400 companies from around the world will be showcasing products at the latest Interschutz exhibition in Hanover, Germany.

mercedes fire truck 3

Mercedes-Benz's fire trucks feature cutting edge technology

Mercedes-Benz will be presenting three vehicles at Interschutz, including the new Unimog U5023, an extreme off-road vehicle designed to fight forest and vegetation fires. The U5023 is equipped as a water tender and features special equipment such as an automated manual gearbox and an auxiliary transmission with off-road range.

The Econic 1830 features a low-roof cab and an automatic turntable ladder with a basket that can be extended up to 105 feet and pivoted at the top. Mercedes-Benz has elected to provide Hanover, the capital city of the German state of Lower Saxony, a fleet of the Econic 1830 for its full-time fire department.

mercedes fire truck 4

The ladders have a large reach and sophisticated mechanisms

The Zetros 2733A is designed to be used by international aid organizations in crisis zones around the world and includes a number of impressive technological innovations. The Zetros cab fits five crew members and a pump-and-roll feature that allows them to fight fires while driving.

Mercedes-Benz often uses its resources to support education and arts initiatives, but its commitment to developing emergency service vehicles further emphasizes its devotion to helping the public. It has become increasingly popular for luxury brands to give back to the community, as Mercedes has shown with this new initiative.

mercedes fire truck 1

Many of the trucks can be driven off-road

Helping hands

While emergency services vehicles may not be the typical luxury automobile, Mercedes-Benz has previously explored different vehicles in the past. Earlier this year, the German automaker was the inspiration behind a new high-performance racing boat that made its debut at the Miami International Boat Show.

Mercedes-Benz worked with longtime partner Cigarette racing to help create a speedboat that was displayed next to the new Mercedes-Benz car at the show. The 2016 Mercedes-AMG GT S and the Cigarette Racing 50 Marauder GT S Concept represent two of the most powerful engines available today (see story).

This new initiative to promote social good comes along with Mercedes-Benz’s current efforts to enter the electricity market. The German automaker and its parent company Daimler are taking lithium-ion batteries out of automobiles and crafting power supplies for companies and homes.

Daimler has previously outsourced the production of its lithium-ion batteries to Deutsche ACCUmotive, a subsidiary of the company, and will continue to work with them on this project. This entry into stationary energy storage will allow Daimler to reach Mercedes-Benz consumers and others in a new manner and demonstrate the technological advances possible by the brand (see story).

Mercedes-Benz's fire trucks continue this effort of social good, however, it is unclear whether the initiative will have a significant impact on the brand's success in the United States.

"Of course these Mercedes-Benz fire trucks are brilliant in design and build quality," Mr. Prosser said, "but I also don’t personally see them as a U.S. product offering that could or will give the United States fire truck makers such as ALF, E-one, Seagrave, Pierce etc. a run for their money."

Final Take
Kay Sorin, editorial assistant on Luxury Daily, New York