The two giant automakers have scheduled a joint press conference call for Tuesday morning, The Detroit Free Press reports. According to Volkswagen AG chief executive Herbert Diess and Ford executive chairman Bill Ford, discussions between the car manufacturers have yet to be finalized but they admit there are considerable opportunities to collaborate.
“The talks are going really well. We’re going to have more to say later this week. Stay tuned. We’re still actually in final discussions,” Bill Ford said.
Speaking after the introduction of the new Passat, VW chief executive Herbert Diess confirmed that the automakers will collaborate on commercial trucks, something we already knew. He failed to say what other areas the partnership could include.
“Volkswagen is a really big car company worldwide, a big car company, but we are not as big in small commercial vehicles so we decided to join forces there. And we will become very, very competitive together in this segment — which consists of small commercial vans and small and midsize pickup trucks,” Diess said.
A host of recent reports have suggested that the partnership could extend to the co-development of electric vehicles and autonomous vehicle research. Volkswagen has previously suggested that it could also build vehicles in Ford plants across the United States.
“Partnership is very often about economies of scale in our industry. As I said, we are big, but there are segments where it makes sense to work together. … Combining forces would strengthen Ford and Volkswagen,” Diess added.