Mercedes-Benz is delaying the US release of its Tesla rival by a year

Mercedes-BenzThe Mercedes-Benz EQC.

Mercedes-Benz is delaying the US release of its electric EQC SUV from the first quarter of 2020 to 2021, Automotive News‘ Urvaksh Karkaria first reported. The automaker confirmed the move to Business Insider.

“It is a strategic decision to first support the growing customer demand in Europe” for the EQC, a Mercedes-Benz representative told Business Insider.

Mercedes-Benz reportedly announced the new release date in an email to US dealerships on December 13.

Dieter Zetsche, the former CEO of Mercedes-Benz’s parent company, Daimler, said in February that the automaker would not be able to meet demand for the EQC in 2019, and likely not in 2020 either. Mercedes-Benz plans to release more than 10 electric vehicles by 2022.

Sales of luxury electric SUVs by Jaguar and Audi have been weak in the US this year, according to InsideEVs. Through November, the website reported that Jaguar has sold 2,418 I-Pace vehicles, while Audi has sold 4,623 e-tron SUVs. Tesla sold 13,725 Model X SUVs in the US through September, according to InsideEVs. The electric-car maker’s Model 3 sedan, the best-selling electric vehicle in the US, sold 111,650 units through September.

I-Pace and e-tron sales have been stronger in Europe, according to CarSalesBase.

Read Automotive News’ full story here.

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