Mercedes has officially announced plans to end their van partnership with Volkswagen.

As part of a long-term realigning of the Sprinter production strategy, the company will not renew their contact to build the Volkswagen Crafter when the current contract expires at the end of 2016. As you may recall, the companies tied up in 2005 and have built approximately 280,000 Crafters since then.

Mercedes was coy on details but Volker Mornhinweg, Head of Mercedes-Benz Vans, said "Both partners had a benefit from the long lasting cooperation." He added, "With the next Sprinter, which is currently in development, we will ultimately be dependent on the production capacities that we have currently made available to Volkswagen. That’s why our employees will only produce our own brands in the future."

Gallery: Mercedes ends partnership with Volkswagen, hints at next-gen Sprinter

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