Automotive News Europe reports today that Porsche and Volkswagen have finally cleared the way for combining their brands under a single operation. The new carmaking group would have no less than 10 brands under one roof, though the "independence of all brands and explicitly also of Porsche shall be ensured." VW will be bring its nine brands to the table, while the Porsche brand itself would be contributed by Porsche Automobil Holding SE, the separate holding company owned by members of the Porsche and Piech families.

Today's news is yet another step in Porsche's long journey to take a true controlling interest in Volkswagen. The German sportscar maker has reportedly already amassed a 51% stake in Volkswagen to date, but that's not enough of a majority in Germany to run the tables. Porsche still intends to raise its stake to 75% when economic conditions allow, but then there's Lower Saxony, Volkswagen's home state that reserves the right to veto any sweeping changes, to deal with. But at least they appear to have gotten this one thing done.

[Source: Automotive News Europe, sub. req'd | Photo by NIGEL TREBLIN/AFP/Getty]