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BMW wants to step up cooperation with Mercedes

From AFP News| June 11,2007

BMW wants to intensify cooperation with its fellow German luxury car maker Mercedes, a top BMW executive told a German magazine in comments released on Sunday.

"Cooperation is a good approach," said Michael Ganal, BMW sales and marketing chief, as it allows "each group its freedom," he told Wirtschaftswoche in an article to be published on Monday.

"The two brands are in the luxury segment, they both are high-tech, they are both independent but they are not the biggest car makers," he said.

Ganal declined to say which areas BMW and Mercedes, owned by DaimlerChrysler, the increased cooperation would come. The two firms already collaborate, together with General Motors, on the development of hybrid cars.

The magazine also said that BMW was looking at introducing a fourth brand alongside BMW, Mini and RollsRoyce, and that it was interested by GM's Volvo unit. A spokesman for Volvo declined to comment.

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