The Volkswagen Group‘s courtship of Ducati may come to an end next week with Audi formally announcing its purchase of the Italian manufacturer as soon as April 18. That’s the day before the annual shareholders’ meeting for the Volkswagen Group, Audi’s parent company.

Reuters reports Audi has completed its assessment of Ducati and found no hiccups that would curtail a buyout. Audi reportedly received first dibs for negotiating with Ducati’s main shareholder, Investindustrial until April 15. Investindustrial may talk to other buyers after that but if negotiations are proceeding as well as Reuters’ sources say, other suitors may not get that chance.

Ducati would add a new weapon to Volkswagen’s arsenal in its battle against German rival BMW. Reuters notes Audi has been researching lightweight fuel-saving technologies. Ducati’s expertise with small but high-revving engines could benefit Audi in that regard.

[Source: Reuters]

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