Mercedes Has No Plans To Increase Stake In Aston Martin
Rumors have swirled regarding Mercedes-Benz increasing its stake in Aston Martin to the point of completely buying the company and incorporating the small British automaker into its fold. Those rumors were shot down at the Paris Motor Show by the head honcho himself, Daimler chief Dieter Zetsche.
“There are no plans to increase our stake or take over,” Zetsche outright says. “[It] would not be in Aston’s interests to be incorporated into a big corporate organization, as it would include risk.”
Currently Mercedes owns five percent of non-voting shares in Aston Martin. The partial ownership came by way of a technical partnership struck in 2013 where Aston Martin has access to AMG resources for engine and electrical components.
Zetsche continued in saying, “Aston is only 4000 units a year so there is also a danger we would be distracted from our core business. The deal is a perfect fit for both brands as it allows Aston to remain independent but also benefit from outside technology.”
Aston Martin’s outlook is bright these days. Besides the helpful engineering hand AMG is extending Aston’s way, Andy Palmer of Nissan has moved over to head the specialty automaker. “I regret Andy Palmer leaving Nissan as he was very positive to work with for us, but as he’s left I welcome him to Aston and look forward to future co-operation,” Zetsche remarked.
Click past the jump to read more about the Mercedes-Aston Martin partnership.
Why It Matters
Partnerships like this one can be a slippery slope for both automakers involved. Recall the relationship Aston Martin previously had with Ford Motor Company as the perfect example. The smaller company was infiltrated with the big company’s parts and design philosophy, even when it possibly contradicted the heritage of the smaller company. This led to several years of lackluster products that felt as if they were designed by Ford’s accountants, rather than Aston’s engineers.
With Daimler not interested in an outright takeover, but an engineering knowledge agreement, the partnership will likely be far more beneficial to Aston than a full buy-out would likely be.