Top managers from Mitsubishi Motors Corp. and DaimlerChrysler AG today will discuss an alternative MMC proposal for a DaimlerChrysler executive to be its chief operating officer, MMC officials said Tuesday.
MMC President Katsuhiko Kawasoe and Eckhard Cordes, a board member of the German-American automaker, will also discuss a proposal to give DaimlerChrysler a 40 percent stake in MMC rather than the earlier agreed-upon 34 percent.
MMC is embroiled in a scandal over covering up customer complaints about defective cars for more than three decades, and Kawasoe will resign to take the blame.
When the scandal first broke, MMC asked that a DaimlerChrysler executive assume the MMC presidency to help revive its flagging image. But DaimlerChrysler declined, and MMC is now asking the maker of Mercedes-Benz cars to fill its No. 2 post and assist Takashi Sonobe, who has been chosen to take over as president, the sources said.
Sonobe is currently MMC’s vice president.
MMC’s image has taken a hammering since the scandal made headlines, and police have searched its head offices in Tokyo twice.
On July 28, the two automakers signed a pact calling for DaimlerChrysler to buy 225 billion yen in newly issued shares, giving it a controlling stake of 34 percent in MMC. The pact also allows DaimlerChrysler to place three executives on the MMC board.
DaimlerChrysler is to purchase the new MMC shares in October, an MMC spokesman said.
DaimlerChrysler is contemplating whether to let one of the three executives assume the COO post, or send a fourth executive as COO, the sources said. If a fourth man is sent as COO, it would require approval at an MMC general shareholders’ meeting.
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