Ford considers selling Volvo Cars business

Volvo's new V70 car is on display during the first media day of the 77th Geneva car show at the Palexpo in Geneva March 6, 2007. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse (SWITZERLAND)

LONDON (Reuters) - U.S. automaker Ford is considering selling its Volvo Cars business as it assesses the future of its European operations, a source familiar with the matter said on Sunday.

The review of Volvo was still at a very early stage and may not result in a sale, the source told Reuters, adding that Ford had so far not hired financial advisers for the operation.

“Ford is not in discussions with any company to sell Volvo, however we are continuing to assess options for all our operations,” a London-based spokesman for Ford said, while declining to comment further.

Last week, speculation about a Volvo takeover was fuelled by an interview with BMW Chief Financial Officer Stefan Krause in a German newspaper, who had not ruled out takeovers of other carmakers or brands, although he was also quoted as saying any talk of a bid for Volvo Cars was “pure speculation”.

The speculation, however, lifted shares in Swedish truck maker Volvo around 5 percent on Thursday and analysts said there was market confusion as investors mixed up the Swedish truck maker with the Ford-owned auto maker.