Update II | McLaren denies: Sale to Audi 'completely untrue'

Update II | McLaren denies: Sale to Audi 'completely untrue'

15-11-2021 12:51 Last update: 14:02

Both BMW and Audi are said to be aiming at a takeover of McLaren. That is what Car Magazine writes on its website this weekend. BMW would be very interested in McLaren Automotive, but the company itself denies this. Audi would like to take over the supercar business and the Formula 1 team of the formation from Woking.

Talks between BMW and McLaren are said to be in preparation. 'Behind the scenes, intermediaries, brokers and agents have been busy exploring options, assessing values, setting strategies and evaluating risks and opportunities. A key player is Mumtalakat, Bahrain's sovereign wealth fund that owns about 42 per cent of McLaren.'

It was expected that the first 'on the record' conversation between Mumtalakat and BMW would take place in early December, but BMW itself denied this in conversation with Reuters. In the meantime, according to insiders Audi has already bid for the supercar department and the F1 team. The value of the Formula 1 team is estimated at around one billion pounds. 

Former McLaren mechanic Marc Priestley also reports on his Twitter that there are many rumours that Audi has agreed to buy the entire McLaren Group. What exactly is true is unknown. What is certain is that we will learn more and more about the plans of Audi and/or BMW in the near future.

Big losses McLaren

Due to the corona pandemic, McLaren has had a very hard time financially. Recently there have been signs of recovery, but last year sales of the number of cars decreased by 64 percent and there was an operating loss of 222.9 million pounds. As a result, 1,200 workers were made redundant.

Update | Audi and McLaren Group deal already done

According to the respected Autocar, the deal is already complete. A source is said to have told the medium that an agreement has been reached. It gives Audi full control over a return to Formula 1 from 2026.  

Update II | McLaren refutes reports

The McLaren team said in response that Autocar's news is incorrect. "McLaren Group is aware of a news media report stating it has been sold to Audi. This is wholly inaccurate and McLaren is seeking to have the story removed. McLaren’s technology strategy has always involved ongoing discussions and collaboration with relevant partners and suppliers, including other carmakers, however, there has been no change in the ownership structure of the McLaren Group."

Audi itself also commented to Reuters: "As part of our strategic considerations, we are constantly looking at various cooperation ideas", said a spokesperson, who did not want to say anything more about this. However, it seems obvious that there are or have been talks.