VW, Suzuki not on speaking terms, thinking about seeing other people
Posted Sep 8th 2011 4:00PM
You know the script – you meet somebody new and all cylinders seem to be firing in perfect harmony. You decide to see more of each other, consider moving your relationship to the so-called next level. You exchange keys. And that's when things start to go sour.
The symbolic exchanging of keys between Volkswagen and Suzuki took place back in December of 2009, and the souring has been taking place ever since. Considering that VW purchased 20 per cent of Suzuki as part of the deal, you might think that calling Suzuki an "associate" and stating that it has the power to "significantly influence financial and operating policy decisions" of the Japanese automaker would be pretty darn factual. Suzuki saw things otherwise.
The signs of a growing conflict showed up shortly after hands were first shaken. More recently, Suzuki has expressed more and more discontent with its partnership, even going so far as to make a deal with Fiat for diesel engines instead of seeking them from Volkswagen, itself a leader in modern diesel technology, and CEO Osamu Suzuki claimed VW had no technologies his company was interested in acquiring.
A report from Bloomberg indicates that the two automakers are now not even speaking to one another, though both companies claim they want to extend an olive branch and take another look at the partnership. Seems they just want the other one to make the first move, eh?