Ford Motor Co. and BP Amoco have agreed to examine ways of collaborating in new fuel technologies, traffic management systems and environmental policies, the Financial Times reported on Tuesday.

The newspaper said the two companies had set up working groups to consider cooperating in what could become the most far-reaching partnership between a carmaker and an oil group in the automotive industry.

"We have agreed to look at cooperating in quite a lot of different arenas, including public policy positions on the environment," Ford Europe Chairman Nick Scheele was quoted as saying.

Several leading carmakers have already formed limited joint ventures with oil companies to examine alternative power sources in the face of tough new controls on carbon dioxide emissions in Western Europe and North America.

General Motors and Exxon Mobil are developing a fuel cell technology to extract hydrogen from normal petroleum while DaimlerChrysler and Royal Dutch/Shell are working on a similar project.