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Fiat Chrysler Joins Forces With Google Autos (Another Merger Of Equals?)

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SEE ALSO: Hey Car Industry Open Your Eyes, The Silicon Valley Crowd Is On Their Way To Appliance-ize Cars (And The Need For Your Company)

SEE BELOW: Video Of Complete 1 hour and 11 minute Merger of Equals Press Conference From London We bet you can't find it anywhere else on the net!!!

MOUNTAINVIEW CA and auburn hills mi; Google and Fiat Chrysler are in "late stage talks" on a technical partnership on Google's self-driving car project, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal, citing AutoExtremist. The talks are said to have been underway for several months, and are in final negotiations.

This is just the latest in a series of reports about Google looking for a partner in the automotive industry to help it build cars with the self-driving technology that it has been building for years. Back in December, a number of stories claimed Google and Ford were creating an entirely new company to build self-driving cars.

"Google has been looking for a partner for a while"

It seemed like a good fit, but Fiat Chrysler and Google could be even better. Google is looking for a partner with car-building experience to help it build its cars at scale, while Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne spent much of 2015 trying (and failing) to merge with GM after spinning off Ferrari into its own firm — and has recently hinted that the search for a merger partner isn't over.

Comment From Karl Brauer, senior analyst for Kelley Blue Book:
“FCA’s efforts to merge with another automaker have failed, but if the automaker can join forces with Google it could immediately change the dynamic. Every car company is trying to get into the tech space right now because they all know their future depends on it. At the same time, tech companies are trying to understand how to transition from software, interface and personal device production into the much more complicated world of automotive manufacturing. A Google/FCA tie-up could simultaneously put both companies in lead in this critical race.”

Comment From Matt DeLorenzo, managing editor of Kelley Blue Book:
“Google’s investment in John Krafcik is paying dividends. While the tech giant has massive amounts of cash and technical expertise, it has had very little contact with the real world of building and selling automobiles. There’s a lot Alphabet can learn from an active manufacturer in the business. This tie-up is an important step in the decision of whether or not the company should or could get into the auto business. On the flip side, FCA has been lagging in terms of a presence in Silicon Valley. With resources more limited than its competitors, it has been taking a go-slow approach to future tech (and even electrification of its fleet). For someone in FCA’s position, that’s not a bad strategy since the cost of technology drops quickly once it reaches critical mass. FCA may not be first with new features, but it can adopt them later when costs are lower and still be competitive in the marketplace. This tie-up, however, could put it back into a leadership position when it comes to future tech, including autonomous vehicles.”

The Auto Channel 1 Hour 10 Minute Video Of The Mercedes-Benz Chrysler "Merger" Press Conference