In order to achieve our ambitious growth targets, we will systematically expand our product range in the coming years. In this context, we also aim to utilize growth potential outside our traditional markets by taking appropriate local action. At the same time, we want to make sure that we can play a leading role in the far-reaching technological transformation of the automotive industry. This applies in particular to the digital connectivity of our products and processes along the entire value chain. By intelligently connecting the constantly growing volumes of data, we will create efficiency advantages, improve our product quality and facilitate the ongoing flexibilization of the production process. Against this backdrop, we will once again significantly increase our investment in property, plant and equipment in the year 2017.
Following the significant increase in the year 2016, capital expenditure at Mercedes-Benz Cars will increase again in 2017. The most important projects include the product ramp-up of the new GLE and GLS, the successor models of the current compact class, and new gasoline and diesel engines. Substantial investment is planned also for the realignment of our German production sites as competence centers, as well as for the expansion of our international production network. Daimler Trucks will mainly invest in successor generations of existing products, in new products, in global component projects and in the optimization of its worldwide production network. At Mercedes-Benz Vans, the focus of capital expenditure will be on production of the next generation of the Sprinter in Germany and the United States. Key projects at Daimler Buses are improvements in the production network and advance expenditure for new models, in particular for the development of an electrically powered city bus.