Ford chief Alan Mullally confirmed two important realities for Autocar at the Detroit motor show this week; while Aston Martin remains available to the highest bidder, Jaguar isn't, and that will probably mean a change of transportation for everyone's favourite international spy.
In an interview given to Autocar, Mullally said 'Jaguar has a good business plan and some quality products in the pipeline. The new XF is a terrific car built on an admirable heritage too. The company is in a tough situation, and I'll give no comment about selling it right now, but I remain very positive about it.'
'Aston Martin has made excellent progress over the last few years,' he went on 'and we're expecting to make an announcement about its future early this year.' However, Autocar's sources suggest that a buyer for the brand has already been found and a deal agreed, and the deal should be made public before the end of the winter.
Mullally's comments have implications for lovers of both brands, but for one Aston driver in particular – James Bond – they'll almost certainly mean a change of allegiance is in order.