Daimler keen to expand Tesla partnership

Mercedes-Benz parent company Daimler is keen to expand its partnership with electric vehicle specialist Tesla Motors to electrify more models in its range.
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Asked about the German automotive giant’s component purchasing deal with Tesla, Daimler chief financial officer Bodo Uebber confirmed, “We want to look for more cooperation”.

“I told my guys, go back to Tesla and look for other opportunities,” Uebber said, as reported by Reuters.

Tesla currently supplies Daimler with lithium-ion batteries and electric motors for its Smart Fortwo EV and Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive models, the latter launching in Europe and the US in 2014.

Mercedes-Benz product research and development manager Dr Thomas Weber confirmed at September’s Frankfurt motor show that the luxury car division was committed to working with the California-based EV maker into the future.

“Tesla is sexy, Tesla is an innovator,” Weber said.

“We will help Tesla to survive … we use the hardware and we use the knowledge of our engineers to make this a Mercedes-Benz drivetrain.”

Daimler holds a 4.3 per cent stake in Tesla after investing US$50 million ($53 million) in 2009.