DaimlerChrysler Chairman Juergen Schrempp said the automaker is sending "a signal of solidarity and humanity" with the donation. The money will come from the company’s DaimlerChrylser Corporate Fund charity, established for philanthropic causes.
The automaker has also teamed with the UAW in donating an additional $1 million to the American Red Cross, which is heading humanitarian relief efforts in Washington and New York.
The donation follows a $250,000 contribution by General Motors on Wednesday to the Red Cross. GM increased its donation on Friday to $1 million, and restated its offer to match dollar-for-dollar all employee donations to the Red Cross.
In the Northeast, where cleanup and rescue activities have entered a third day, GM also donated the use of its fleet of sport-utilities. The Northeast fleet headquarters is in Purchase, N.Y., and covers the U.S. region from Maine to Virginia.
Ford Motor Co. donated 10 Excursion sport-utility vehicles to the New York Fire Department and has offered to meet other emergency and long-term needs of New York City officials, such as donating office space.
Ford donated $1 million to the Red Cross on Wednesday. The automaker told its workforce that it will match employee contributions to the Red Cross and it used its Intranet to encourage employees to give blood.
Like Ford, the BMW AG's U.S. group has donated $1 million to the Red Cross and 10 of its X5 sport-utilities. Additionally, the German automaker has given New York 100 police motorcycles to replace equipment lost by the New York Police Department. The total donation is valued at $2.4 million.
Hyundai/Kia Motors Group on Thursday said it would make a $300,000 donation will be to the American Red Cross.
French tiremaker Michelin Group donated $1 million to the Red Cross on Wednesday. Michelin’s North American arm is donating up to $250,000 in tires for emergency vehicles involved in the New York rescue efforts.
The National Automotive Dealers Association and several of the largest auto dealerships in the United States are also pitching in.
NADA set up a "Survivor Relief Fund," primarily to assist the families of firefighters and police officers who lost their lives.
The Greater New York Automobile Dealers Association is contributing $250,000 and the New York (state) Automobile Dealers Association is contributing $10,000 to NADA's fund.
AutoNation Inc. in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. -- the nation's largest dealer group -- donated $50,000 to Red Cross.
Asbury Automotive Group in Stamford, Conn. donated $500,000 to families of victims.
Lithia Motors Inc. in Medford, Ore. has given free loaner cars to people who had trouble getting out of various cities.
The DaimlerChrysler donation will be used for various kinds of support, including educational needs, according to a company press release. The automaker has opened an account so its employees around the world can add to DaimlerChrysler’s initial donation.
DaimlerChrysler’s Chrysler group is delaying its Jeep 101/Chrysler Proving Grounds vehicle demonstration event in Hartford, Conn., which was slated to start Wednesday. The event will be held Saturday and Sunday.
Mercedes-Benz USA Inc., headquartered in New Jersey, is considering further steps in aiding victims.
"We are providing information to employees on where to donate blood," said spokeswoman Liz Hamel. "We’re considering a clothing drive or even transportation."
A semiannual New York event called Fashion Week, of which Mercedes-Benz USA is the title sponsor, was cancelled. The automaker donated its tents at 40th Street and 6th Avenue as shelters for victims.
-- Staff reporters Julie Cantwell contributed to this report