Could Rick Wagoner rock the boat on Renault-Nissan deal?

Analysts say that General Motors Chairman and CEO Rick Wagoner might be the biggest hurdle for Kirk Kerkorian to jump in making an alliance between GM and Renault-Nissan a reality. The big man in Detroit, analysts say, wants to get out of hot water on his own and with his own management team, not let Carlos Ghosn take all the credit when things look up for the world's biggest automaker.

Analysts (and Dieter Zetsche at a press conference last Friday) also indicate that Kerkorian's call is more indicative of Kerkorian and Jerry York's impatience with Wagoner, not a serious attempt to get the two companies to merge.

In Wagoner's defense, there may be good reason not to give up the reins, the biggest of which is the vote of confidence given to him by the board last April. While GM continues to lose market share and the SEC is a little wary of the company's accounting practices, Wagoner and his team can be credited with cutting costs, negotiating some concessions from the UAW, and turning out better product.

[Source: Detroit Free Press via the Tennessean]

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