Actually the 10% stake of Tesla for Daimler is not just a brilliant investment for new technology (Daimler is currently working on a new strategy for hybrid (eco-friendly) cars (availabe in june in germany, the S 400 hybrid), and Teslas electro-motor expertise fits very well with that) but its an investment into design.
Teslas new chief of design is Franz von Holzhausen who moved there from Mazda in 2008 – this tallented guy will come handy as a consultant to a new „eco-friendly“ design strategy for daimler, which is trying to make a strategy fusion of high-class, but low energy-consuming cars.
Daimlers problem is, that the S class will be at the top of the high-class limousines for a while – at least from a technology point of view. But with the new versions of Audi (A8) and BMW (7) (supposed by the end of 2009) Daimler has to work on the look of their flagship, which will be changed again in 2011 in terms of design I suppose. The current version of the S class is based on the W221 from 2005, and is just undergoing several facelifts.