Daimler and Geely Start a New Ride-Hailing Service in China

100 Mercedes comprising of S-Class, E-Class and V-Class will run across Hangzhou.

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Daimler and Geely have decided to undertake the challenge of competing with Didi Chuxing with their premium ride-hailing service in China. Both the companies have created an equal joint venture for this purpose and initiated this service with the name ‘StarRides’ in the city of Hangzhou.

In the first phase of this mobility service, 100 Mercedes vehicles comprising of S-Class, E-Class and V-Class will run across the city with plans to expand in other cities next year.

Daimler and Geely started working on different plans after Geely acquired a 9.7% stake in the German auto giant’s firm. Apart from overseeing the Smart brand, the two are also working on electric and self-driving car technologies. In this regard, Daimler has joined hands with Baidu to develop the autonomous tech, which they could use in their ride-hailing service.

Enough talking about the service, let’s discuss the challenge ahead. Competing against Didi will not be a walk in the park because they have deep roots in the Chinese ride-hailing market. They even forced Uber to seize its operations in 2016. That being said, we believe Didi has a real challenger this time. Geely is not new to the ride-hailing; they are in this business with Caocao, which runs across 28 urban areas. On the other hand, Daimler also has experience in the mobility space with its ‘Free Now’ service that is available in some areas of Europe. This service works in partnership with BMW Group along with others.

Let’s see how Didi responds to the competition.

Source and Images: MotorAuthority

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