Spiegel Online set the rumormill ablaze with an unconfirmed report that General Motors is seeking some sort of cooperative deal with German automaker BMW. Speigel says The General's interest in BMW is primarily related to the German firm's gasoline and diesel engine technology.

Beyond that, Spiegel reports that Stephen Girsky, GM's board member in charge of strategy, has started discussions with BMW on "far-reaching joint projects." For his part, BMW chairman Dr. Norbert Reithofer previously went on record saying the German automaker was open to the idea of selling engines to other companies so long as such a move – like the recent agreement BMW made with Fisker Automotive – wouldn't strengthen a direct competitor's position or damage BMW's reputation.

In exchange, Spiegel reports that BMW is intrigued by the technology behind the Opel Ampera. This should come as no surprise considering that former Opel exec Frank Weber (pictured) now heads research and development at BMW. Weber is known as the leader of the team that transformed the Chevrolet Volt from a wild-eyed concept to a production vehicle.

Dow Jones says neither General Motors nor BMW were immediately available for comment on this alleged deal.


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 27 Comments
      Jason
      • 3 Years Ago
      yea! Go America!
      Smoov Mocha Nut
      • 3 Years Ago
      This type of news isn't so surprising. The two automakers have worked together in the past --- many BMW cars were using GM transmissions & their joint venture with (then) DCX to create the dual-mode hybrid transmission for SUVs & trucks. BMW uses their version of the dual-mode hybrid transmission in the X5/X6 gas-electric hybrid SUVs. I think the GM & BMW already have a positive relationship. This should be a normal exercise of tech swapping in the European market.
      Clarke Bouma
      • 3 Years Ago
      This is shocking! Never thought I would see BMW going to GM for tech no matter how electrifying it is.
        Tetratron
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Clarke Bouma
        GM and BMW will definitely be increasing the amperage on their future and current product lines. (Am I doing it right?)
      kevsflanagan
      • 3 Years Ago
      Why spend hundreds of millions of Euro's when you can spend just a few to get the technology you want from someone else. Would be interesting to see where this leads if any of this holds water. Only thing I'd see BMW asking is that none of their engines go into Cadi's since they are direct competitors.
      Rotation
      • 3 Years Ago
      I'm a little skeptical, given that the last bit of hybrid tech they shared has been a total flop for BMW. Plus this article calls it "Opel Ampera tech" instead of Voltec. It almost reads like a viral ad for the Opel Ampera. I would also note the Dow Jones article is incredibly unspecific, just saying the cooperation would be about gas and Diesel engines.
        mbukukanyau
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Rotation
        for Germans, they like to believe no engineering ever comes from North America. So, Ampera tech makes it sound opelish and not chevroletish...
          bvz
          • 3 Years Ago
          @mbukukanyau
          That's funny. And I'm German, so I know it's true.
      hevace
      • 3 Years Ago
      GM shoud have been allowed to fail. I just read recently how they used taxpayer dollars to pay lobbyists. Corrupt SOB's.
        steve
        • 1 Year Ago
        @hevace
        Why? Why would we want a major America car company to fail? Why would we want to displace 1million workers and harm Ford in the process? Europe has always aided it's car makers and Japan has assisted Toyota with r&d since the 1960s. Now the Chinese are getting into the game and own a majority of their auto companies. GM needed a reboot, and the US gov was the best positioned to do this. BTW, all major companies hire lobbyists--are u naive?
      At_Liberty
      • 3 Years Ago
      Why would they want a POS Obammunist bailout car ??? BMW must be stoopid too... / sarc
        steve
        • 1 Year Ago
        @At_Liberty
        Volt was planned long before TARP or Obama. Seems like people think this was a Gov project. It takes many years to develop a typical car and more time for an electic vehicle. The Volt idea came from Bob Lutz and was aimed as a halo car intended to boost Chevy's reputation after years of the Cobolt and Malibu Maxx SS. Like it or not, Volt is a transformative vehicle that will only improve over time--look at the new ELR. Chevy NA needs positive attention and Volt, the new Corvette, and SS should help the brand catch up with Ford--Malibu is the only real dud.
      mbukukanyau
      • 3 Years Ago
      Frank Weber is a GM traitor
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        mbukukanyau
        • 3 Years Ago
        Man, you are living where? BMW engines are nowhere near durable. I would put them way below , Honda, Ford, GM, Toyota, Yamaha, Mercedes, to name a few.
      throwback
      • 3 Years Ago
      I give BMW credit here. The i3 will be available as a range extended EV. Why not partner up with GM if you think they have better tech? As mentioned below, GM does not need BMW diesels in the near term, but no reason they can't jointly develop next gen diesels.
      ShutoSteve
      • 3 Years Ago
      How many ways are there to spell Spiegel??
      Jahanzeb Sheikh
      • 3 Years Ago
      Lured in by Opel Ampera tech, BMW seeks deal with GM Read more: http://www.cars.currentblips.com/2011/09/lured-in-by-opel-ampera-tech-bmw-seeks.html#ixzz1XoJkD2mH
    • Load More Comments