DETROIT -- Daimler has delayed plans to launch a fuel-cell powered variant of its B-class compact car and is now in talks with Renault-Nissan and Ford Motor Co. on sharing the technology and reducing costs.
Daimler's hydrogen fuel propulsion system is ready for series production but the company believes that it cannot currently sell the B class at a competitive price, so it will delay the car until at least 2017.
In order to achieve higher sales volumes and reduce costs, Daimler is in talks with Renault-Nissan and Ford to achieve a deal that would allow all four automakers to share the technology in its compact cars, according to Automobilwoche sources.
"We are in promising talks with interested companies," a Daimler spokesman said.
Ford spokesman Alan Hall said Friday: "We don’t comment on speculative reports."
There was no immediate comment Friday from Renault-Nissan.
Any deal is likely to see Nissan, a current partner of Daimler, extending the use of the German carmaker's B-class underpinnings, which it is currently using in the development of a compact model for its luxury Infiniti brand.
Daimler has already developed a B class electric car, which will it unveiled at the Paris auto show last year ahead of sales in 2014.