On Thursday, German government sources were spinning a story about the long, drawn-out, sale of Opel/Vauxhall. It told Bloomberg that GM ‘resistance’ to a deal that would see Magna take the company over ‘was crumbling’.

The German government is very keen to see Opel – which has been propped up with 1.5bn Euros in state ‘bridge funding’ – sold to a consortium led by Canadian automotive company Magna. Magna, however, is also heavily backed by a Russian interests, including Sberbank.

General Motors, however, is not very keen to see Opel/Vauxhall and all the company’s newest technology sold away to predominately Russian interests.

It would probably prefer to sell Opel to RHJI, a Belgian based investment company. Some say this is because GM would like to buy Opel back at a later date.

This afternoon GM Group vice president John Smith made it quite clear in a blog that a sale to Magna is still facing huge hurdles.

‘Press reports have tended to exaggerate the state of progress, a few even suggesting the deal is done and that Magna has been selected. That’s not the case…. As noted in my prior blog post, the Magna proposal is more complex, owing to the inclusion of Russia and a third, Russian-based investor.’