Daimler AG today announced the sale of its Mercedes-Benz division to a consortium of British investors doing business as New British Leyland LLC, which promised to revitalize the Mercedes-Benz brand with new British innovations while keeping the cars’ inherent Germanic character intact.
“We promise to revitalize the Mercedes-Benz brand with new British innovations while keeping the cars’ inherent Germanic character intact,” said New British Leyland’s Director of Public Affairs, Sir Colin Peter Fenwick-Gloustershire VII, QC, Ninth Earl of Stoulton-On-Sea.
Fenwick-Gloustershire said future Mercedes-branded cars will feature the same luxurious, solidly-built feel owners have come to expect, while incorporating British conveniences such as uneven panel gaps that provide extra ventilation, safety features such as climate-sensing engines that refuse to start when the weather is rainy and roads are slick, and random build-quality issues intended to cement the relationship between owners and dealers.
New British Leyland plans to move all of Mercedes’ design, development, and engineering to the United Kingdom, but will maintain a post office box in Stuttgart while retaining a handful of token Germans in important-sounding but otherwise ineffectual positions.
Germany’s governmental trade body, the Federaltradzenfahrtenzebung, issued a statement saying it harbored deep misgivings about the effects of British stewardship on a brand so closely identified with German technology and innovation, but that under European Union regulations, it was powerless to block the sale.
“We understand the Germans’ frustration,” Fenwick-Gloustershire told Autoblopnik. “We have long wanted to see brands like Rolls-Royce, MINI, and Bentley return to Britain, but their German owners have so far been reluctant to sell. Of course, if New British Leyland were able to acquire those companies, capacity constraints would most likely force us to put Mercedes-Benz back on the market. Perhaps once the Mercedes brand becomes synonymous with leaky sunroofs and dodgy electrical systems, the Jerries will reconsider.”