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The future of Cosworth

THE uncertainty surrounding the future of Cosworth Engineering continues despite denials from its parent company Vickers PLC that the Northampton engine business - which builds the Ford V10 F1 engine - is up for sale. Rumors have suggested that German car builder BMW is interested in acquiring Cosworth.

Vickers is certainly making news at the moment. Last week it denied reports in British newspapers that it is about to be merged with British Aerospace. Financial experts dismissed the story but said that Vickers is more likely to be taken over by rival armored vehicle manufacturer GKN, which is looking for major acquisitions at the moment.

Visiting last week's Concours d'Elegance at Pebble Beach, California, to launch the Bentley Azure convertible, Graham Morris, the chief executive of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Ltd., another subsidiary of Vickers, was forced to deny speculation that his company was up for sale.

At the same time, however, Vickers is selling off parts of its empire. Last week the company agreed the sale of Jered Brown Brothers Inc., an American offshoot which specializes in marine electronic systems. Vickers is also selling its medical subsidiary S&W Medico Teknik.

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