All the bids are in and the winning bidder has been revealed: Aston Martin is being bought by LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SA, the French luxury goods consortium that produces upper-crust products ranging from leather trunks and wallets to champagne and cognac...and now exotic luxury sports cars, too.

In placing the highest bid, Louis Vuitton beat out some serious contenders, including consortia led by Aston's current boss, billionaire moguls and numerous heavy-hitting investment firms.

Ford Motor Company will reportedly retain 15% interest in Aston Martin when Louis Vuitton takes over. Although both Ford PAG and Louis Vuitton declined to comment to DowJones MarketWatch, the media outlet that broke the story, German car mag Autobild will be running the story tomorrow (Friday).

While there has been a history of fashion labels and automakers collaborating on special editions – including Aston Martin and Dunhill – the purchase of a stoic marque like Aston Martin is pioneering new ground, although Louis Vuitton does have an established history in sponsoring concours d'elegance.

Gold and brown DB9, anyone?

UPDATE: Motor Trend is reporting that the published reports regarding a sale to LVMH are inaccurate.

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[Source: MarketWatch]