Does Chrysler own Mercedes? Did Chrysler merge with Daimler? On May 7, 1998, the German automobile company Daimler-Benz—maker of the world-famous luxury car brand Mercedes-Benz—announces a $36 billion merger with the United States-based Chrysler Corporation.
The purchase of Chrysler, America’s third-largest car company, by the Stuttgart-based Daimler-Benz marked the biggest acquisition by a foreign buyer of any U.S. company in history. Though marketed to investors as an equal pairing, it soon emerged that Daimler would be the dominant partner, with its stockholders owning the majority of the new company’s shares.
For Chrysler, headquartered in Auburn Hills, Michigan, the end of independence was a surprising twist in a striking comeback story. After a near-collapse and a government bailout in 1979 that saved it from bankruptcy, the company surged back in the 1980s under the leadership of the former Ford executive Lee Iacocca, in a revival spurred in part by the tremendous success of its trendsetting minivan.
Does Chrysler own Mercedes?
The history of car manufacturers and their parent companies can get complicated fast—and Chrysler has one of the more tumultuous histories of them all. While Chrysler didn’t technically buy Mercedes-Benz, the company was acquired by Mercedes’ parent company Daimler-Benz in 1998 as part of a $36 billion dollar merger. Spoiler alert: it didn’t end well.
The goal was to create a new empire with Chrysler being the more practical option and Mercedes-Benz being the company’s luxury brand à la Toyota and Lexus. The two companies weren’t a good match, though, and due to a serious lack of cooperation (and failed market forecasting), 2006 saw the downfall of Chrysler.
After cutting 26,000 jobs and posting a loss of $1.5 billion, Chrysler models still weren’t selling well, leading to Daimler selling Chrysler to Cerberus Capital Management for 7.4 billion dollars in 2007. After a few economic crises and bankruptcies, Chrysler joined forces with Fiat in 2014, creating Fiat Chrysler Automobiles.
Chrysler’s Complicated Parentage: Who Owns It Now?
The Chrysler brand has used many of its nine lives to date, but the longtime American brand, which has had many adopted and foreign parents, is still alive. For now.
The Chrysler brand is currently part of FCA US, which is owned by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. FCA is a dual-headquartered company with the Fiat side of the business based in Turin, Italy, and the former Chrysler Corp. operations based in Auburn Hills, Michigan.
Chrysler dates back to 1925, founded by Walter Chrysler, and it is still referred to as part of the Big Three or Detroit Three, referring to General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler.
Chrysler has teetered many times on the edge of a financial cliff. It was on the verge of bankruptcy in the late 1970s and was saved by government loan guarantees worth $1.5 billion that bought time until the release of a surprising savior in secret development: the minivan.
In 1998, in a deal worth $36 billion, Chrysler was acquired by Daimler-Benz of Germany, and the so-called alliance or “merger of equals” was named DaimlerChrysler. It was not a good fit, as the two cultures never really merged—though Daimler-sourced platforms helped make vehicles like the Chrysler 300C, Dodge Charger and Challenger, and Jeep Grand Cherokee much better than their predecessors—and Daimler sold Chrysler in 2007 to Cerberus, a private equity firm in the U.S., for just $7.4 billion.
The financial crisis in 2008 proved devastating for Detroit automakers. Chrysler laid off thousands of white-collar workers, going so far as to unscrew lightbulbs in their empty offices and stopped plowing snow off the top deck of unused parking garages to save money.
Plant closures, shift eliminations, and model line rationalizations were all planned with the loss of thousands more blue-collar workers. Work on future products was mostly curtailed. The few remaining resources were diverted to development of the next-generation Chrysler 300 full-size sedan and the new Jeep Cherokee.
On April 30, 2009, Chrysler filed for bankruptcy. General Motors filed for bankruptcy June 1, and while the government deemed GM too big to fail and had a reorganization plan for the company to exit bankruptcy, government officials were divided as to whether to use government money to save the smaller Chrysler.
In the end, government loans totaling more than $10 billion were provided, and when Chrysler exited bankruptcy, it had a patchwork of owners including the U.S. and Canadian governments, the United Auto Workers pension fund, and Fiat S.p.A. which agreed to supply some of its powertrains and other tech, and also share its CEO, Sergio Marchionne.
In the subsequent years, Fiat gradually acquired shares from the other stakeholders while paying down the government loans. By 2014, Fiat had acquired 100% of Chrysler, which became a full subsidiary of the Italian automaker. A new entity, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, was formed. The Chrysler subsidiary was renamed FCA US. Marchionne remained CEO of the cross-Atlantic empire with a long list of automotive brands, including Chrysler.
Which brands does Stellantis currently own?
Stellantis is a constellation of 14 famous automobile companies and two mobility arms. The roster of Stellantis includes some automobile brands from France, Italy, and the United States. Stellantis North America represents the three American marques Dodge, Ram, and Chrysler. Some of the Stellantis group brands are Abarth, Chrysler, Dodge, DS, Fiat, Jeep, Maserati, Mopar, Peugeot, Ram, and more.
Where are Chryslers manufactured?
Chrysler vehicles were produced in Chrysler’s Jefferson North Assembly, the company’s primary car production plant that remained entirely in Detroit, Michigan, even though specific Chrysler models were entirely manufactured in Toluca Car Assembly in Toluca, Mexico.
Chrysler runs three production facilities in Canada, the United States, and Mexico.
The majority of Chrysler’s parts are manufactured in two locations in Canada. Nonetheless, Chrysler’s Pentastar Engine is currently manufactured in two locations: Trenton Engine in Trenton, Michigan, and Saltillo South Engine in Saltillo, Mexico.
According to USA Today, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles stopped production in the United States in early 2017. They moved Chrysler vehicle production to Mexico, where vehicle production is often much cheaper.
Chrysler is one of the biggest collections of brands in the automobile business. Many plants that manufacture Chrysler vehicles produce Dodges, Rams, Jeeps, and Fiats.
The existing manufacturing plants are still under the control of the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles group. This corporation has manufacturing plants in the United States, South America, Europe, India, and China.
What is the last company Chrysler merged with?
The Chrysler brand, recently known as Fiat Chrysler, merged with the parent firm of the Peugeot brand in 2021 to become Stellantis. Chrysler, Dodge, Fiat, Fiat Professional, Jeep, Ram, Alfa Romeo, Abarth, Lancia, and Maserati are all brands under the Fiat Chrysler umbrella.
Did Chrysler merge with Daimler?
Daimler-Benz and Chrysler planned to improve their position in the car sector during economically challenging times by dealing with the crisis together.
In May 1998, Chrysler Corporation and Daimler-Benz AG announced that they planned to merge, with Daimler-Benz acquiring the American automaker in a stock swap for more than $35 billion. Each company’s shareholders went on to accept the merger in September and finalized it in November.
Why did Daimler and Chrysler’s merger fail?
Daimler-Benz AG of Germany acquired Chrysler Corp for $36 billion, but the two companies never took off as planned. DaimlerChrysler faced challenges like frequent cost-cutting and poor sales of Chrysler models.
Daimler Chrysler was also under pressure from German shareholders who believed the underperforming American brand was harming Mercedes and Maybach.
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