This was reported by the "financial times deutschland" on thursday with reference to "high-ranking company insiders". It would be the first time that daimler opens a car model with the star for co-production. The inventor of the automobile has so far only been working with partners in certain areas. For a long time, the swabians have been worried about their weak return on investment despite good sales figures.
According to the paper, smaller mercedes models and cars from nissan’s premium subsidiary infiniti could roll off the production line together as early as 2016. The talk is of a smaller landing vehicle. Daimler did not comment on the information provided by the newspaper. A spokeswoman said on thursday: "we do not comment on speculation of this kind."
The expansion of the cooperation, however, fit into the picture. At the opening of the new plant in kecskemet, hungary, at the end of march this year, the dax group announced: "mercedes-benz cars will continue to strengthen its profitability through project-related cooperations, such as with renault/nissan, as well as through savings in the context of module and platform strategies and greater efficiency in the value chain."In the race for the crown in the premium segment, the swabians are currently lagging behind their rivals BMW and audi. In terms of cars sold, the competition earns more and is therefore more profitable in the overall structures of the core business. But daimler wants to be back at the forefront by 2020 at the latest.
With the french-japanese alliance, a number of projects and plans are already underway. From 2014, mercedes benz four-cylinder gasoline engines will be built at the nissan plant in tennessee, u.S.A. The partners are also considering joint production of the alternative fuel cell drive system. Cooperation has already gone furthest in the area of commercial vehicles, where the partners for japan have already agreed to exchange entire models. Daimler’s subsidiary fuso will also build the five-ton canter for nissan in the future. In return, nissan will produce a truck under five tons for fuso. Both companies thus close gaps in their product range.
A closer partnership with the compact cars would also be an option for cutting costs. Because in the battle to catch up with BMW and audi, daimler’s new compact car strategy will play a key role. Their margins are weaker, which puts the focus particularly on cost efficiency in production.
Examples of cross-brand cooperation in the premium market can be seen at volkswagen, for example. Even when porsche was not yet completely under the roof of wolfsburg, both sides worked closely together. The porsche cayenne land saloon is pre-assembled at the slovak VW plant in bratislava. This is also where the VW touareg, which is roughly identical in design, is being built. Porsche also uses VW plant capacity at the commercial vehicle location in hanover-stocken.
Porsche will install audi engines in the macan small gelandelimousine planned for 2014. The stuttgart-based company is also developing two so-called modular systems for VW. These cross-brand puzzle pieces are a good way to save money – from development to purchasing to production. This model was also an option for daimler and could find its extreme in a co-car production with nissan.
Circles close to the company confirmed to the news agency dpa on thursday that there were corresponding discussions. At the moment, however, the stuttgart-based company is doing a lot of math. Nothing has been decided.
The compact car family at daimler is to grow from two to five. Already known are the A and B classes. There will also be a small gelandelimousine and a four-door compact coupe below the c-class. Details of number five are still unofficial.
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