Volkswagen is considering launching a new bid for Malaysia's Proton, according to media reports.

This will tap the country into growing southeast Asian markets and follows a failed attempt to tie-up with the Malaysian company in 2007. Sources told Reuters VW might seek either a minority holding or a controlling stake.

VW already assembles the Passat sedan in partnership with Malaysian automotive and property conglomerate DRB-HICOM at the company's plant in Pekan. The carmaker also wants to add Jetta and Polo production to the factory.

German publication Manager Magazin reported that VW was considering another bid for Proton, noting that its deliberations might even include a full-scale acquisition in the long term.

A move would help VW towards its goal of boosting global deliveries to more than 10m vehicles by 2018.

Previous talks between VW and Proton broke down partly because of pressure from Malaysia's former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad, who said that the then state-owned company must remain in Malaysian hands.

However the state sold its 42.7% stake in Proton in January to DRB-HICOM for US$411.9m.

Auto market intelligence
from just-auto

• Auto component fitment forecasts
• OEM & tier 1 profiles & factory finder
• Analysis of 30+ auto technologies & more