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Oct 24 2009

Volkswagen offers to save Karmann

Posted by volkszone

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Volkswagen is offering to save Germany’s Karmann from going bust, but the contract carmaker’s owners are demanding more money than VW is willing to put up, weekly Spiegel reported, giving no details of its sources.

Without fresh funds, the German independent contract carmaker and convertible roof-top specialist, will have to shut down in early November as new orders remain scarce and customers remain unwilling to pay their bills.

Volkswagen has bid a low double-digit million euro sum for Karmann, whose owning families Battenfeld, Boll and Karmann are demanding almost 100 million euros ($150 million), Spiegel said in a preview of an article to be published on Monday.

Volkswagen, Europe’s biggest carmaker, declined to comment on the matter.

Most famous for the 1950s VW Beetle-based coupe dubbed the Karmann Ghia, Karmann also developed the retractable hardtop roof first introduced with the Mercedes-Benz SLK before the idea was later copied by competitors, finding widespread use in popular volume models like the Peugeot 207cc.

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