British car manufacturer MG Rover may be out of business, but the Iranian government is negotiating with its British counterpart to not only acquire all the company’s assets, in partnership with other Asian countries, but also revitalise the brand.

British car manufacturer MG Rover may be out of business, but the Iranian government is negotiating with its British counterpart to not only acquire all the company’s assets, in partnership with other Asian countries, but also revitalise the brand.


The Iranian Minister of Industry, Ishaq Jahangiri, on Monday said his government hoped to resuscitate MG Rover rather than just strip it of assets, as one Iranian automaker suggested.


CARtoday.com reported recently that Longbridge-based MG Rover stopped production after failing to secure a rescue deal with Chinese consortium SAIC, and went into the administration of PriceWaterhouseCoopers.


"Some talks have been held; we're now in the assessment stage to see what the ceding terms are," Jahangiri said. "We reckon our auto industry is capable of reforming a troubled European carmaker and churning out a car to world markets under the same brand".


Iran Khodro, the Middle East's largest car manufacturer, has said acquiring Rover would not fit in with its plans. SAIPA, Iran's second-biggest manufacturer, said it would be interested in procuring parts of the British firm.


However, Jahangiri said a full buy-out could still be on the cards, particularly if Iran were to team up with other Asian countries.


"I think Iran and China, and maybe India at a later stage, can manufacture some Rover parts in their countries.


“I don't think the British government wants to sell the production line for the car to be manufactured elsewhere," Jahangiri added. "The British government will be looking for someone who can re-launch Rover in Britain”.


Jahangiri said Rover's research centre could still design cars after an Asian takeover. Some of the parts would then be produced in Iran, China and India before being assembled back in Britain under the Rover brand.


"It's Rover's best bet," he concluded.


Jahangiri did not comment on whether London's relations with Washington, Iran's arch-foe, would present a political obstacle to any potential Iranian buy-out.

Original article from Car