Motoramic

November 12: Daimler and Chrysler officially merge on this date in 1998

Justin Hyde
Motoramic

It was supposed to be the best of both worlds and a "merger of equals:" Daimler-Benz would get the volume car building business it needed to compete against Toyota and Volkswagen while Chrysler would get its own partner who could stabilize and perhaps even stop the near-collapses that the automaker seemed to face about once a decade. On this date in 1998, the shares of DaimlerChrysler started trading worldwide; in Auburn Hills, Mich., the company served apple strudel and a special "German-American" blend coffee to employees. The photo above comes from nine years later — when a woebegone Daimler sold Chrysler off to private equity, after billions of dollars in losses and management that never truly embraced the merger. At least Celine Dion fans had something to cheer:

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