MUNICH, Germany — General Motors will make an offer to buy Bavarian car company BMW in the next few days, a German newspaper reported Saturday.
Rumors about BMW's future have been swirling since its chairman, Bernd Pischetsrieder, was dismissed Feb. 5 amid criticism of his handling of BMW's British subsidiary, Rover.
BMW spokesman Joerg Dinner denied the report Saturday in the German newspaper Die Welt.
"BMW wants to stay independent," Dinner said, adding that the company's main shareholder, the Quandt family, remained "unbroken" in its support of the company.
General Motors spokesman Dan Jankowski said, "We wouldn't have any comment on the rumor of the takeover."
General Motors was one of the few companies that could afford BMW's price tag of $7 billion to $9 billion, Die Welt noted.
The report comes one day after the German newsmagazine Der Spiegel reported Volkswagen wanted its subsidiary Audi and BMW to take a 24.9% stake in each other. VW would take over the ailing Rover plant in Britain as part of the deal.
BMW denied that report too, though it earlier acknowledged that VW has long been interested in acquiring at least a stake in the company.
BMW has invested more than $3.5 billion in Rover since buying it in 1994. Analysts expect Rover to post a pretax loss of about $590 million for 1998.