Ford sellup: it's Aston, not Jag
31 August 2006

Aston Martin is for sale: its owner Ford is considering its options for the Warwickshire supercar manufacturer, with ‘particular emphasis on a potential sale’.

It had been thought that the American giant was to dispose of troubled Jaguar, but the nature of Aston’s high performance three-car range and its dealer network means it has very few synergies with other Ford brands.

Aston is also a much easier sale. It is in its best shape in living memory; the investment to deliver the profit-generating Vanquish, DB9 and V8 Vantage has been made. The concern is not just a going one, but one that is going places.

Rumours are circulating that Dr. Ulrich Bez, head of Aston, may join with venture capitalists to buy Ford out. Ford seems likely to retain a stake in Aston– perhaps around 20 per cent – if it sells the firm.

In a statement, Ford chief Bill Ford said that selling Aston is “the most logical choice”. He added that no decisions had been taken about Ford’s other PAG brands – Jaguar Land Rover and Volvo.

Read Steve Cropley's reaction here.

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