Originally posted 2014-11-05 11:00:02.
By Chloe Coska | amdlawgroup.com
Daimler AG (Mercedes) will buy 25 percent of Italian motorcycle maker Agusta, legendary in the motorcycling field for having won at least 75 world championship rider and constructor titles. Daimler said that it would buy the stake via its Mercedes-AMG performance car unit and seat on Agusta board.
Daimler does not disclose the financial terms of the deal only that it is part of a broader cooperation deal which will focus on marketing and sales. However, this deal will give Daimler access to access to high-performance, lightweight technology, including three-cylinder engines developed for Italian superbikes.
Indeed, with stricter pollution regulations, automakers are progressively interested in the lightweight construction technology and compact engines, which could be used as “range extender” add-ons to complement electric engines in hybrid vehicles.
This deal follows move by rival automakers to add superbike technology to high-end German sportcars. One of Daimler’s rivals, Volkswagen, which already owns Lamborghini, Bentley and Bugatti brands, bought in 2012 Italian motorcycle maker Ducati for 860 million euros.
Famous race car engineer Gordon Murray said, “Bike engines are ahead of cars in terms of their weight. And for the car industry shedding weight is the final frontier.” Motorcyle makers are also ahead of the car industry in terms of the way they use plastics, rather than metal for structural parts. With bike makers suffering from lower production volumes it makes sense to work with a large car maker which has resources,” he said.
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