Mercedes, Aston Martin increase EV focus with new agreement

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Words: Matthew Hansen
28 Oct 2020

A new “strategic technology agreement” between Mercedes-Benz and Aston Martin will see the two marques work closer together on their next generation of hybrid and fully electric powertrains.

The two brands have been in bed with each other for almost a decade, and this new announcement appears to take things to the next level. While specifics about what’s being exchanged are scarce, it’s been confirmed that Aston Martin will be given access to Mercedes’ hybrid and EV powertrains in exchange for stocks in the iconic brand.

Currently Mercedes-Benz owns 2.6 per cent of Aston Martin. This percentage is set to increase under the new agreement, but to “no more than 20 per cent under the new deal”.

“Aston Martin requested access to certain engines and powertrains as well as powertrain software, E/E architecture and various other components,” in exchange for stock, says Mercedes, adding that the two companies “need to agree upon the scope of the technology to be made available to Aston Martin, the respective value and the piece prices of components and systems.”

“Today, we take another major step forward as our long-term partnership with Mercedes-Benz AG moves to another level with them becoming one of the company’s largest shareholders,” said Aston Martin Executive Chairman Lawrence Stroll.

“Through this new expanded agreement, we secure access to world-class technologies to support our long-term product expansion plans, including electric and hybrid powertrains and this partnership underpins our confidence in the future.”

The announcement is something of a reprieve for Aston Martin, after a tough few years in the industry. Record losses in 2017 were followed by disappointing Vantage sales, fluctuating share prices, a rough period of losses during Covid-19 lockdown, and the sudden sacking earlier this year of former CEO Andy Palmer.

However, the arrival of Stroll, a raft of new investors, the firm’s first SUV, and a new CEO in former Mercedes-AMG head Tobias Moers has helped put Aston Martin back on track. And, an improved tech partnership with Mercedes should give the firm a new lease on life.

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