Ford Motor Co.’s sale of its Land Rover and Jaguar units is likely down to a two-horse race between Tata Motors Ltd and One Equity Partners, a unit of JP Morgan Chase and Co., says Dow Jones Newswires, citing an unnamed person familiar with the situation.
A spokeswoman for Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd (M&M), the third bidder in the final stages of the auction, declined to comment late on Tuesday on the report that it is now out of the running.
It is widely believed that Tata Motors, India’s largest auto maker, is said to be the preferred potential partner for Ford, which is likely to name the buyer later this month.
Dow Jones Newswires also said there is little difference in price between the Tata Motors and One Equity offers. It is unclear what the two bids were.
Trade unions in the UK that represent workers at the auto units have said they prefer the Tatas, though Jaguar dealers in the US have asked Ford not to sell the brand to an Indian company because of potential brand image issues.
Dow Jones Newswires, owned by News Corp., is a sister concern of The Wall Street Journal, which has an exclusive content partnership in India with Mint.