According to people briefed on the situation, Daimler’s Mercedes-Benz and Nissan’s Infiniti brand could join development forces on their compact cars line-up, aiming to cut cost.
The main reason behind such a close alliance (which for the matter Renault and Nissan only now are planning to do) is, besides the obvious cost savings, Mercedes need to expand its North American presence and production and Infiniti’s strive to broaden its car line-up.
The sources, which declined to reveal their identities because the deal is still private, said an outline settlement would see new cars for the Infiniti brand built by Nissan’s Mexico facilities manufactured next to the next-generation Mercedes GLA SUV and other compact models.
“Some people argue that we should (negotiate) with Daimler because they will sell more cars on the platform,” one Renault-Nissan executive said. “But that’s what gets in the way of successful alliances.”
Two sources mentioned that although Mercedes would have a higher production volume and sales, the investment would be split evenly between the two groups – which could amount to cutting the costs of going alone by around a quarter.
According to the sources, Nissan’s Aguacalientes 2 plant in Guadalajara, which just opened in November with an initial manufacturing capacity of 175,000 vehicles would be in charge of making Mercedes and Infiniti’s new cars.