Mercedes' CORE Plan Leads to Improved Savings, Revenue

DaimlerChrysler said Tuesday that a program launched in 2005 to restore the luster of the company's Mercedes Car Group has worked so well that it's being ended ahead of schedule.

Dubbed the CORE program, it was begun in February 2005 with the goal of improving savings and revenue, which it has done, the Stuttgart-based automaker said, finishing three months earlier than planned and counting some 7.1 billion euros ($10.02 billion) in savings and improvements.

The initiative was begun to improve the Mercedes-Benz group's competitiveness in a field dominated by rivals like BMW and Audi .

"The fact that we are able to complete CORE ahead of schedule -- and, most importantly, with such success -- is a testimony to the tremendous effort made by our employees and demonstrates that our organization has what it takes to get the job done," said Rainer Schmueckle, chief operating officer of the Mercedes Car Group responsible for production, quality and purchasing and director of the CORE program.

Shares of DaimlerChrysler were up 0.2% to 69 euros ($97.33).