Daimler is in talks with British automaker Aston Martin over a possible collaboration on the German company's new top-of-the-line Maybach marque, the Financial Times reported Thursday.

The two luxury carmakers are considering a partnership that would give Aston Martin access to Daimler's engine technology in exchange for building the Maybach, people close to the situation said.

Sources say a new Maybach model designed by Aston Martin, a specialist in small volume production, would likely be cheaper for Daimler than producing the cars internally.

Maybachs, which are priced from €300,000 ($392,000), have faced disappointing sales against less-expensive rivals Rolls-Royce and Bentley in recent years. Only 200 Maybachs were sold in 2009, a third fewer than in 2008.

Aston Martin, whose iconic sports cars were made famous in James Bond films, aims to sell 5,500 to 6,000 cars this year.

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