2011 Mercedes-Benz E-Class CabrioEnlarge Photo
2011 Infiniti M37Enlarge Photo
Would you buy a Mercedes that shared its underpinnings with an Infiniti? Or would you opt for the (likely cheaper) Infiniti built on the Mercedes platform? These questions and more arise when contemplating the latest spate of speculation surrounding the Renault-Nissan/Daimler partnership.l
Previous talk of shared platforms between the recently tied-up Renault-Nissan and Daimler AG stayed strictly in the realm of compact and small cars, mainly in the B/C-Class combo-vehicle range, with three- and four-cylinder engines shared from Renault to Merecdes-Benz. But the latest talk puts the E-Class on the table as the platform for Infiniti's next M and G vehicles.
That's a pretty big leap to make, and one that would be of dubious value to Mercedes-Benz should it become common knowledge--the cost savings from volume could be outweighed by the image issues of sharing with what many perceive as a second-tier luxury brand. On the other hand, Daimler could pull a DaimlerChrysler and let Infiniti use its last-gen hardware as was done with the Chrysler Crossfire. That, of course, would be of dubious value to Infiniti.
In other words, we don't see where this particular matchup is going. So far, it's little more than vague speculation from unconfirmed sources, so we'll take this particular morsel with a tablespoon of salt, thank you.
Whatever happens, it's not likely to see rubber meet road until the next generation of cars rolls around, as both Infiniti and Mercedes have recently introduced new versions of the E-Class and M.
[Best Car via PistonHeads]