All three networks pointed out that Chrysler was the last of Detroit's Big Three to announce mass layoffs. Its 13,000 makes the industry's hemorrhage of jobs add up to a 105,000 total. To cover higher labor costs, Chrysler has to "tack a couple of thousand dollars onto the price of every car," ABC's Dean Reynolds (subscription required) explained, with the upshot that it "cannot afford to add the extras and creature comforts that are driving customers to Toyota or Honda."
Of course, Chrysler is no longer, strictly speaking, part of Detroit. It is German owned. "The marriage was never smooth," CNBC's Phil LeBeau acknowledged, but "few expected" Daimler's announcement that it was considering a divorce. Back in 1998, Daimler paid $40bn for Chrysler, CBS' Anthony Mason reminded us. "Estimates are that if they do sell they would get less than half of that back." Mason called "the most intriguing idea" a sale to a Chinese auto manufacturer looking for an established brand name and a foothold in the United States.
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