UPDATE, 3 March 2021: Volkswagen subsidiary Porsche has participated in the latest investment round at Rimac Automobili, reportedly sinking €130 million to €150 million (AU$200-230 million) into the Croatian electric vehicle venture.
Recent reports suggest Porsche – which already owns 15.5 per cent of Rimac – is looking to increase its stake in the company by as much as 35 per cent (allowing for a total ownership of 50 per cent, a controlling share).
According to these rumours, parent company Volkswagen could, in exchange, hand the keys to Bugatti over to Rimac.
The most recent investment is expected to be finalised in the next eight to 12 weeks. According to Porsche CEO Oliver Blume, a decision on future plans for Rimac and Bugatti will be decided in the first half of this year.
Speaking to German outlet Automobilwoche earlier this week, Mr Blume said: "At the moment there are intense deliberations on how Bugatti can be developed in the best possible way. Rimac could play a role here because the brands are a good technological fit.”
"There are various scenarios with different structures,” he added. “I believe that the issue will be decided by the group in the first half of this year.”
Porsche – which, like Bugatti, is a Volkswagen Group subsidiary – currently owns 15.5 per cent of Rimac. Hyundai, Kia, Jaguar Land Rover, and Koenigsegg and are also significant investors in the Croatian marque.
In September 2020 CarAdvice reported Volkswagen was looking to offload its high-performance marques, in order to direct more resources towards its high-volume ID electric vehicle program. Rimac, meanwhile, is looking for production facilities to produce its 1408kW/2300Nm C_Two hypercar.
The alleged deal would see Porsche increase its stake in Rimac to as much as 49 per cent, and, in return, Rimac would acquire the Bugatti name.
A spokesperson for Rimac was unable to comment on the speculation when approached by CarAdvice.