In spite of the non-discrete presence of Wolfgang Bernhard around Chrysler headquarters in Auburn Hills last week, a German paper seems to think that only Magna is really serious about taking over the company. Automobilwoche reports that Cerberus, of which Bernhard is part of the team, and the Blackstone Group apparently may be being brought in by DaimlerChrysler's investment bankers to provide the appearance of more interest than there really is. A go/no-go decision on a sale is likely to be made in the next few weeks.

From an operational standpoint, Magna is the bidder likely to be most interested and capable of succeeding in reviving Chrysler. They have long wanted to be more than just a supplier and they've been doing full vehicle assembly through their MagnaSteyr division, so they have the motivation. Blackstone has had some sucess in running large suppliers like American Axle and TRW so they may also be interested in more than just splitting up Chrysler and selling it off. Cerberus' intentions are less clear although the presence of Bernhard does lend credibility to their desire to rebuild the company. There is always the possibility that Daimler will decide to just hang in there keep the US based group.

[Source: Reuters]

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