Monday, January 7, 2008

Chrysler reportedly seeks a Mahindra partnership

Chrysler LLC, which is searching for partners to help give the Auburn Hills automaker a more global reach, is reportedly in talks with Indian automaker Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. over some sort of partnership.

Chrysler wants to tap the Indian company's engineering expertise to develop products for emerging markets, the Economic Times in India reported today, citing an unnamed industry source.

Mahindra was reportedly in the bidding to purchase the Britain-based Jaguar and Land Rover brands from Ford Motor Co. Friday's report said the potential Chrysler and Mahindra deal could include an equity stake.

A spokeswoman for Mahindra could not be reached for comment, and a Chrysler spokeswoman was unable to comment Friday. Chrysler prepared Thursday for more global alliances, appointing Simon Boag executive vice president for global alliance operations.

"As outlined in the company's recovery and transformation plan, growth in markets outside of North America is critical to the success of Chrysler," President and Vice Chairman Tom LaSorda said in a statement. "We are looking for new alliances and growth opportunities all over the world."

LaSorda signed a partnership with Chinese automaker Chery Automobile Co. last year to sell small cars under the Chrysler, Dodge or Jeep brand names.

An executive at Gaz, a Russian automaker, told the Financial Times in London last month that his company was talking with Chrysler.

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