In the past few months Volkswagen has expanded to become an even larger global player, taking over Porsche and announcing a majority stake in Italdesign Giugiaro. Now Germany’s largest automaker may be looking to add yet another brand to its stable – Proton. The Malaysian automaker might not be all that familiar to audiences in North America, but we’re certain you’ve heard of its sports car division – Lotus.
During a press conference to announce the company’s return to profitability, Proton Chairman Mohamad Nadzmi Mohamad Salleh commented that the company is in talks with Volkswagen and that, “We will make an announcement in one to two weeks.”
There’s no word if Volkswagen is looking to take a part of Proton or if its just a technical partnership. VW and Proton were engaged in similar talks in the past but they fell through. A new car market with an increasing need to exploit economies of scale is likely the main reason both automakers are back in talks.
According to once source, Proton is likely looking to purchase VW platforms and engines and rebadge them for sale as Proton models overseas. Company executives have not commented on if the tie-up specifically involves the Lotus brand.
[Source: Canadian Business]