BMW, China's Great Wall in possible EV joint venture

BMW, China's Great Wall in possible EV joint venture

BMW, China's Great Wall in possible EV joint venture

Meanwhile, Great Wall Motor is reportedly eyeing on a joint venture with German luxury automaker BMW in China. BMW is trying to stay ahead of third-place Daimler's Mercedes-Benz, which recorded 26.6 percent growth in China sales in 2016 thanks to a fresher model lineup. Since MINI is a different brand to BMW, the laws in China would dictate that it finds a local company to join forces with if it wants to expand its production facilities in the country.

Reuters earlier this week reported the two automakers were looking to establish a joint venture in China.

The German auto maker said that it was in the midst of strategic development and expansion of its Mini brand, including diversification of partnerships and new cooperation models.

"A deal with Great Wall wouldn't make sense, at least today, because the two companies have no market overlap and wouldn't achieve greater scale together", the publication quoted 65-year-old Italian-Canadian business magnate as saying.

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The carmakers have been discussing plans to launch electric and conventional Mini models for 18 months, Great Wall said in a stock exchange filing that described the talks as preliminary. Back then it didn't make a lot of sense because the German brand is already working with a different partner in China, Brilliance Automotive, as per the regulations of the Chinese government. A new report, however, hints at MINI being the brand in focus for this new venture.

Great Wall's Shanghai shares have been suspended from trading since late last month.

The aim of the new partnership is so that BMW can increase production volumes and its market share in the EV segment.

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