auto company sales renault amc

AMC had always led a precarious financial existence, and Renault, its French owner, wasn't much help in changing that. When gas became cheap in the mid-1980s, the market moved away from AMC's small cars. After Renault chairman George Besse, who had championed AMC, was assassinated in 1986, Renault sold it to Chrysler for $1.5 billion.

Bottom Line

The deal produced a windfall for Chrysler, which leveraged AMC's Jeep business into a huge moneymaker. Renault made a longer-lasting acquisition in 1999 when it acquired 36.8% of then-struggling Nissan. The Renault-Nissan alliance has mostly thrived since then under CEO Carlos Ghosn.

  @FortuneMagazine - Last updated September 11 2012 12:05 PM ET
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