Mercedes chief Dieter Zetsche did not rule out the possibility that his company, which already owns five per cent of Aston, might acquire the UK firm, although he did what he could to dampen the speculation that has been growing fast.
Aston has been short of powerful industry friends since it was sold by Ford several years ago - and the management knows it.
“This is a fantastic brand, and we are willing to support its further development,” Zetsche said cryptically. He added that Aston had offered the CEO’s job to three individuals and had been rebuffed by two but now had a third in prospect.
AMG will develop the new V8 engine that will be supplied to Aston for the next generation of the Vantage, and will manufacture it in Germany.
Aston will specify its requirements for the engine, but AMG will program the ECU and do the testbed trails. Aston will work on installing it into the new Vantage.