Chrysler is in talks to sell key assets to Nissan-Renault and auto supplier Magna as it rushes to restructure after taking $4 billion US government loans, according to people with knowledge of the discussions.The French automaker on Wednesday denied such talks were under way.
The string of potential deals would deepen ties between Chrysler LLC and two of its key current partners but could also mark the end of the struggling No. 3 US automaker as an independent venture. Renault-Nissan and Chrysler, which is owned by Cerberus Capital Management, had some contact about a sale of all or parts of the US automaker last year before the US government stepped in to bail out Chrysler and General Motors in December.
The present round of talks with Renault-Nissan gathered momentum in recent weeks and have included discussions about a deal to sell Chrysler’s iconic Jeep brand, according to three people with knowledge of the talks. Renault-Nissan, an alliance headed by Carlos Ghosn, has been looking to clarify whether a deal to acquire assets from Chrysler would jeopardize the company’s access to US government funding, one of those familiar with the talks said.
Representatives of Chrysler, Cerberus, Magna and Nissan had no comment. Renault owns a controlling 44% stake in Nissan. A spokeswoman for the French automaker denied talks were under way. “Renault denies it is holding any talks with Chrysler,” said Renault's Frederique Le Greves. (Reuters)