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With the German government taking a very cautious approach towards extending a helping hand to GM's Opel division (Vauxhall in the U.K.), a large group of the brand's dealerships have hatched a scheme that could see them take a minority stake in the company. Under the proposal, participating dealers would put 150 euros from each Opel or Vauxhall vehicle sold into an account for the next three years. The total investment would equal 400 million euros, which would only buy a minority stake in the

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Opel, General Motors' Deutsch subsidiary, may have hit a snag in its bid for government assistance from the German government. According to Automotive News, Finance Minister Peer Steinbrueck says of the proposal as it currently stands: "is not a workable basis for a decision." Steinbrueck said that Germany is willing to offer assistance to its domestic automakers, "But we can't make decisions that are irresponsible on a completely inadequate basis."

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If you're in the market for a Bimmer, now is the time to buy. BMW is raising prices this year and next to help ease the burden of unfavorable exchange rates between European currencies and the weak U.S. dollar. CEO Norbert Reithofer told reporters that the company would also produce 20,000 to 25,000 fewer vehicles overall in 2009 and sell 40,000 fewer units in the U.S. Disastrous exchange rates aren't team Bimmer's only problem, either. The German automaker leases 60% of its vehicles in the U.S.

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