China says Mercedes guilty of price abuses

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

BEIJING (AP) — Mercedes-Benz has become the latest global automaker that Chinese investigators say violated the country's anti-monopoly law.

A regulatory agency in the eastern province of Jiangsu said in a statement carried Monday by the official Xinhua News Agency that the German company improperly used its control over supplies of replacement parts to charge excessive prices.

The report gave no indication what penalty Mercedes might face.

It said Mercedes charged such high prices for replacement parts that buying all the components used in one vehicle separately would cost the equivalent of buying 12 cars.

China is investigating a series of foreign automakers under its anti-monopoly law. An official said earlier that Chrysler, Audi and 12 Japanese parts suppliers were found in violation. Toyota's Lexus unit also is under scrutiny.