BMW's chief executive, Norbert Reithofer, has confirmed he is interested in inviting Mercedes to join its engine joint venture with PSA Peugeot Citroen.

According to the Handelsblatt newspaper, Reithofer said: "If Daimler is interested, the door is open. A third partner would certainly bring significant synergy effects".

PSA's CEO said 10 days ago that Mercedes could be a useful third party for the alliance. PSA already cooperates with BMW on small petrol engines which are used in the German automaker's UK-built Mini.
The next generation small petrol engine could also be used in the 1-Series and by Mercedes-Benz in the A-and B-class.

Reithofer said last week that BMW aims to save EUR6bn in the next five years and reduce investment by forming more partnerships with other vehicle manufacturers.