Chrysler to Sell Key Assets, Renault Denies Talks
Chrysler is one of the three struggling automakers in the United States which strives to comply with the government's requirements after receiving a $4 billion loan in December. Getting rid of certain unprofitable units may be the easiest way to revamp its production line, analysts recently said about Chrysler's financial situation. Ford and General Motors also confirmed they are looking for buyers for their Swedish brands Volvo and Saab.
Recent talks between Chrysler and Renault-Nissan concerned the declining Jeep brand, Reuters reported today citing sources close to discussions. Jeep has just launched two hybrid vehicles at the Detroit Auto Show, Wrangler Unlimited EV and Patriot EV, which are said to help the struggling brand get back in business. In addition, Jeep reported increased sales in December 2008, with Patriot deliveries up six percent this month when compared to the previous one. Jeep Wrangler sales were increased by 15 percent.
However, Renault's officials deny the report saying they aim to purchase Chrysler assets. "Renault denies it is holding any talks with Chrysler," Renault's Frederique Le Greves was quoted as saying by Reuters.
As mentioned, speculations related to a potential Chrysler – Renault transaction issued since last year, despite the fact that representatives of Cerberus Capital Management officials repeatedly denied those reports. Renault CEO Carlos Ghosn also put rumors to rest in November 2008 saying that a potential transaction between the two automakers given the global recession would be pretty risky for both companies.