Even though Beijing Automotive (BAIC) tendered a non-binding offer for Opel, the company is said to have no chance of actually acquiring the brand. General Motors is still in talks with Magna and its partners, GAZ and Sberbank, and according to Sberbank CEO German Graf, "The choice has been made and the question now is of how to structure the deal."

Observers also feel that the GM-Magna agreement is merely waiting on some dotted I's, crossed T's and that the deal won't fall apart unless Magna blows it up or walks away. That hasn't stopped GM and the German government from creating the appearance of courting other bidders for Opel and Vauxhall, including BAIC and Belgium's RHJ.

BAIC appears to be serious, even if everyone assumes that GM's just using it as a decoy. Magna wants to get the paperwork inked by July 15, and that's around the same time that BAIC wants to make a binding offer for Opel's purchase. It's working with Deutsche Bank and PriceWaterhouse Coopers on its proposal, and we can only assume BAIC will be ready with a bag full of cash in the unlikely event Magna exits stage left.

[Source: Auto News, sub req'd]