BMW might spin off Mini making

Randall Padilla
October 14, 2017

Meanwhile, Great Wall Motor is reportedly eyeing on a joint venture with German luxury automaker BMW in China.

There were reports in August 2017 that Chinese automobile manufacturer Great Wall Motors was planning to buy Jeep brand from the Italian-controlled multinational corporation, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA).

"A deal with Great Wall wouldn't make sense, at least today, because the two companies have no market overlap and wouldn't achieve greater scale together", the publication quoted 65-year-old Italian-Canadian business magnate as saying.

A BMW executive familiar with the matter told Reuters the report was "generally true". The new partnership would be the second car-making venture for BMW in China, following its older joint venture with Brilliance China Automotive Holdings Ltd., based in the northeastern city of Shenyang.

BMW's China sales grew 11.3 percent past year.

BMW is now the second-largest premium auto maker in China after Audi. "Leveraging the growth of Mini in China is only possible with a local partner", the company said. It added that both companies signed an agreement in April 2016 to study the feasibility of developing electric vehicles and traditional power vehicles in China.

Brokerage Jefferies said in a note that it was "understandable that BMW needs a new partner to defend its market share in a more competitive market", and expected that the move would hit current partner Brilliance.

The carmakers have been discussing plans to launch electric and conventional Mini models for 18 months, Great Wall said in a stock exchange filing that described the talks as preliminary.

Other reports by AllAboutTopnews

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