By Drew Johnson
Wednesday, Apr 18th, 2012 @ 2:27 pm
 
An unlikely source has revealed that Toyota could be holding talks with PSA Peugeot Citroen about a plant-sharing operation in the northern part of France.

Speaking with La Voix du Nord, French president Nicolas Sarkozy let slip that Toyota is at least considering sharing a production facility with PSA Peugeot Citroen in the country's northern region.

"Sevelnord will be OK," the French president said, referring to PSA's Sevelnord plant. "My understanding is that there's a deal in discussion with Toyota for light commercial vehicles."

PSA currently jointly operates the Sevelnord plant with Italian automaker Fiat. However, Fiat has announced plans to exit the plant in 2017, leaving PSA without a production partner. Toyota might be looking to take Fiat's place, but the Japanese automaker has so far refused to respond to Sarkozy's comments.

The Sevelnord plant, which employs about 2,800 workers, produces the Peugeot Expert, Citroen Jumpy and Fiat Scudo delivery vans.