Honda 'ready to talk to BMW'

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The Independent Online
Honda said yesterday that it was ready to hold talks with BMW over its pounds 800m takeover of Rover, raising hopes that the Japanese car maker might retain links with its British partner.

Nobuhiko Kawamoto, president of Honda Motor Company, said in Osaka that it planned to handle the change in control at Rover 'calmly, in a positive way'.

He went on to deny that Honda, which has a 20 per cent stake in Rover, intended to exact its revenge by releasing its shareholding. 'We want to make a serene decision in a purely business move,' he added.

No date has yet been set for a meeting between Mr Kawamoto and BMW's chairman, Bernd Pischetsrieder, although the two men are expected to get together some time next week.

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