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Reports: Aston Martin likely sold to Prodrive

by Nick Aziz

Ford is likely to announce the sale of its Aston Martin brand to racing firm Prodrive, according to reports by Reuters and the Telegraph. "It's a done deal. All that remains is to cross the t's and dot the i's," said a senior source told the U.K. newspaper.

Sources at the Geneva Motor Show told the Telegraph the sale would be complete by the end of the week. The Reuters news agency reported much the same thing, saying the $900 million deal could be finalized this week.

Ford announced in August it intended to sell the company in order to raise capital. In November, it was reported Aston Martin would likely become an independent car company, since no major automaker expressed an interest in acquiring the marquee.

umors that Aston Martin would be been sold to luxury goods maker Louis Vuitton (LVMH) surfaced earlier this year, and were promptly shot down as "absolute rubbish."

Prodrive revealed a tuning package for the Aston Martin V8 Vantage. The company tuned the 4.3 litre V8 engine to raise peak power from 380 hp to 425 hp, as well as increasing peak torque from 302 lb/ft to 325 lb/ft. This reduces the car's 0-62 mph time from 5.0 secs to 4.7 secs (est).

CEO Dr Ulrich Bez is likely to remain at the head of Aston, and Ford will retain a small stake in the company.