If you are any other carmaker, this is really not what you want to hear on a Friday morning: The industry's 800-pound gorilla and one of its most profitable brands are joining forces. If you are an enthusiast (or environmentalist), however, the would-be products of this collaboration may have you cheering like a Miami Heat fan.

While details are admittedly scarce, the notion of BMW and Toyota throwing in on a sports car has us tickled, especially considering how well the Japanese giant's liaison with Subaru to produce the BRZ and Scion FR-S has turned out. The other aspects of this just-announced BMW-Toyota agreement – a fuel cell system, powertrain electrification and lightweighting technology – make the project sound even more like the stuff of dreams. The expansive partnership builds on a deal between the two automakers brokered in March to collaborate on next-generation lithium-ion batteries.

Count us among those waiting with bated breath to see whether they come true.

For more details, scroll down to read BMW's official press release.
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BMW Group and Toyota Motor Corporation agree to further strengthen collaboration


Companies sign MoU aimed at collaboration in four fields of technology

Tokyo/Munich. Akio Toyoda, President of Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC), met today with Norbert Reithofer, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG, at BMW Group headquarters in Munich to announce the planned expansion of their existing cooperation initiated in December last year. The two companies signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) aimed at long-term strategic collaboration in four fields: joint development of a fuel cell system, joint development of architecture and components for a future sports vehicle, collaboration on powertrain electrification and joint research and development on lightweight technologies.

Also today, Norbert Reithofer and Akio Toyoda of TMC both signed a Joint Statement to reconfirm their companies' shared intention to strengthen the long-term, strategic collaboration between them.

Reithofer said: "We aim to further strengthen our competitive position in sustainable future technologies. We signed an MoU to this effect today. Toyota and the BMW Group share the same strategic vision of sustainable individual future mobility. Together we have a great opportunity to continue leading our industry through this transformation."

Toyoda added: "BMW and Toyota both want to make ever-better cars. We respect each other. And I think this is shown by our taking the next step only six months since the signing of our initial agreement. Toyota is strong in environment-friendly hybrids and fuel cells. On the other hand, I believe BMW's strength is in developing sports cars. I am excited to think of the cars that will result from this relationship."

In March 2012, the BMW Group and TMC signed a binding agreement on collaborative research in the field of next-generation lithium-ion battery cells. In addition, the BMW Group and Toyota Motor Europe entered into a contract under which the BMW Group will supply highly-efficient 1.6 litre and 2.0 litre diesel engines to Toyota Motor Europe, starting in 2014.

Today's MoU represents the companies' agreement in December last year to identify and discuss other possible collaborative projects.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      crazy ray
      • 3 Years Ago
      Ah, the legacy of Hitler and Tojo brings tears to my eyes.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Damn It's WWII all over again!
      • 3 Years Ago
      Hitler and Tojo?
      • 3 Years Ago
      Hey! You got BMW on my Toyota! Hey You got Toyota on my BMW! Nope doesn't work.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Toyota may have rep for building bland, boring cars in the US and Europe, but these makers have more in common than one might expect. BMW, "the ultimate driving machine," is known for it's strict adherence to RWD, specifically FR cars. Believe it or not, this is the preferred drivetrain layout for Toyota's engineers as well. The Toyota Crown (FR sedan) and Toyota Mark X (also FR sedan) sell in far greater numbers in Japan than the unpopular Camry or Avalon, and they chose against an MR or AWD layout in the LFA despite it being an exotic supercar because of a strong preference for FR. Despite making great rear-engined and AWD sports cars like the MR2 and Celica GT-FOUR, their most fondly remembered sports cars are all FR, such as the Supra, AE86, 2000GT, and the new GT86/FRS. Also, BMW's inline-6 is legendary, while one of the most famed non-BMW inline-6s was the engine found in the Toyota Supra. These 2 makers may actually have very compatible engineering philosophies when it comes to building sporty cars.
      • 3 Years Ago
      So you mean all of those active-hybrid models, and hybrid concepts BMW released---they were just pretending? Their intent was just to eventually use Toyota's tech in the end?
      • 3 Years Ago
      This has been reported on another site with a well trusted BMW insider to indeed be a Mini and Toyota collaboration. He says that Toyota has already shipped a next gen IQ prototype to Munich for BMW to work with on the Rocketman program.
      Ed Baggett
      • 3 Years Ago
      Sorry, I can't afford either one !
      • 3 Years Ago
      oh noo good idea, why both automakers together, wait and see in the future, watch out that both automakers will be split break up someday
      • 3 Years Ago
      • 3 Years Ago
      Sounds like a winner to me -- these companies don't compete with each other (except for lexus) so they could very well share technology that would benefit both of them.
      David Donovan
      • 3 Years Ago
      So one of the biggest car companies in the world (Toyota) needs to partner up with Subaru to make the FRS that's basically on par with the 7 year old Miata and now they need to partner up with BMW to make a sports car. How are they one of the biggest car companies out there yet they can't make a Miata on their own and can't make a sports car on their own?
        John Ward
        • 3 Years Ago
        @David Donovan
        Because they are experts at making boring, economical cars.
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