A member of the DaimlerChrysler management board has been quoted as saying the German/US company is preparing an outright takeover of Mitsubishi, leading to shared dealerships in the UK.
Dr Eckhard Cordes, board member responsible for Asia, is quoted on motoring website just-auto.com as saying only Mitsubishi's considerable debts prevent DaimlerChrysler from going from a 34% stakeholder to complete takeover.
He says: "The Mitsubishi participation is 34%, which will be increased as soon as possible.
"What will define when we can do it, is when their financial performance has improved. Because we don't want to be forced to consolidate, fully consolidate, Mitsubishi with the debt burden they sit on."
He also said joint Mitsubishi/Chrysler retail dealerships in Europe was one likely outcome of a complete takeover.