Daimler AG, the parent company of luxury automaker Mercedes-Benz, surprised the industry when it announced the decision to divest the investment in Tesla, fueling speculations the two companies see each other as rivals.
Back in 2009, Daimler acknowledged Tesla had access to the latest and cutting edge battery technology – a fact proven by the unbeatable 265 miles (426 km) of the top of the line Model S with 85 kWh battery pack. The 4% stake it took led to the creation of a technical partnership – and the offsprings are the Smart EV and Mercedes-Benz B-Class EV models.
So far, after the recently announced share sales – which has raised Daimler’s EBIT with an estimated $780 million – the two companies have refrained from commenting the decision. Tesla said nothing so far – neither about the sale nor the future of their cooperation deal. Daimler only said the latter would go on unchanged and the share holding was unnecessary in their opinion.
Analysts though argue that ties between the two companies have loosened over time – especially since Tesla made its patents openly available to any carmaker, a move that could have made an exclusive partnership less attractive to the German company.
Via Automotive News Europe