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There's no question that Wolfgang Bernhard is well liked by the boys at Daimler. In fact, rumor has it that he's currently being groomed (for the second time, actually) to take the reins at Daimler's Mercedes-Benz automotive unit. If you believe the rumors, the only real question is when Bernhard will take over from current head Dieter Zetsche.

The 19th World Cup is set to kick off later this week, and Mercedes-Benz is throwing its weight behind the company's home team in the global competition. Silver Arrow head honcho Dieter Zetsche has just rolled out a wave of incentives in Germany to promote both the brand's association with the World Cup and the company's sponsorship of the German team. In the run up to the competition, German buyers can snag their own Mercedes-Benz with up to $2,493 in cash at current conversion rates, and shoul

Sometimes, little more than a quote is needed to basically tell the entire story. This is one of those times. The quote below comes from Daimler chief executive officer Dieter Zetsche and his words are poignant, shocking and targeted directly at the thirsty automotive market in China which is growing at an extremely rapid rate. Zetsche openly voiced his thoughts during a round table event in Beijing stating:

With pressure mounting on Iran to halt its nuclear program, Daimler is reportedly joining the growing list of businesses – German ones especially – that are reducing their commercial activities with the rogue nation.

2009 Smart Fortwo – Click above for high-res image gallery

2010 Maybach Zeppelin – click above for high-res gallery

Daimler's Dieter Zetsche has called 2009 a "Darwin year" for the car business, with the weak and the lame being pulled down by larger forces. Surprisingly, Porsche was one of those businesses that nearly went under, and it has been looking for help almost anywhere it could get it. Reuters says that Germany's Manager Magazin recently reported that Porsche and Daimler held talks in May regarding Daimler taking a stake in either Porsche or VW in order to help Porsche balance its books.

Spanish Economy newspaper El Economista has published an interview with Dieter Zetsche, CEO of Daimler, in which he says what a lot of our readers have been saying: hydrogen engines don't make sense.

Click above for high-res gallery of the Maybach 62 Landaulet

The sale of Jaguar and Land Rover to Tata means that the two British marques will have to look elsewhere for the parts normally supplied by Ford. Following the news that Daimler could be a supplier to both automakers comes word from Dr. Z himself that a deal is a distinct possibility.

Click on the image to view high-res shots of the Mercedes F700 concept

Mercedes-Benz CEO Dieter Zetsche told Motor Trend this week that increased cost was not going to be an issue for his company to meet new fuel economy standards. Obviously getting improved efficiency out of powertrains would make them more expensive as they have to meet U.S. CAFE and European CO2 emissions limits. However, while U.S. executives like Bob Lutz are talking about adding $5,000 or more to the price to meet 35mpg standards, Zetsche looks at it differently. The use of clean diesels, HCC

GM isn't the only one ready for a lot of hydrogen fuel cell cars. Daimler chairman Dieter "Dr. Z" Zetsche believes that the technology for fuel cell vehicles is here today and that vehicles using the hydrogen-for-energy system will be available in five to eight years time. Zetsche also believes that hydrogen fuel cell vehicles will compare favorably with their competition, which we assume means other alternative powertrains like full-electrics and hybrids. One reason he cites as a fuel cell bene

Daimler CEO Dr. Dieter Zetsche offered a choice quote to his nation's leading weekly news mag, Der Spiegel, when he mentioned that the automaker would be open to developing an engine with the company's cross-town rival, BMW. Apparently, Daimler is in talks with several companies about joint projects, but as of now, nothing is set in stone.

It seems obvious now, but the sale of Chrysler leaves Mercedes Benz in a similar position as it's cross-country rival, BMW. Back when BMW bought the ailing MG-Rover marque, the results, to say the least, were less than positive. When the dust finally settled after the sale of Rover in 2000, the automaker had dropped billions of dollars into the company with little to show for the expenditure.

We have more details on the rumored restructuring plan that the Chrysler Group is expected to announce on February 14th. First, it's dubbed internally as "Project X", which must mean it involves chimpanzees and large doses of radiation. In addition to radiated chimps (we're kidding, click the link for the punchline), Automotive News is reporting that the plan will likely involve cutting 10,000 factory jobs and closing the Newark Assembly Plant that builds the Dodge Durango and Chrysler Aspen, as

Chrysler Group CEO Tom LaSorda travelled to DaimlerChrysler's headquarters in Stuttgart, Germany, last Wednesday to present a restructuring plan to the company's management board. The Detroit News reports that the plan will involve job cuts and and the closing of at least two plants in the U.S. The plan will be reviewed by the DCX management board and likely announced in February when the company reveals its performance numbers for 2006, which analysts expect to be billions in the red.

The Chrysler Group is looking for advice from other DaimlerChrysler divisions on how to cut the cost of each vehicle it produces around $1,000 on average. DaimlerChrysler CEO Dieter Zetsche told CNBC in Paris that executives from Mercedes-Benz in particular were helping put together a plan to make the cost cutting happen. The group advising Chrysler CEO Tom LaSorda also includes execs from the company's commercial vehicle operations and some outside consultants.

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