US motorcycle maker Harley-Davidson to lauch takeover bid for Ducati- Report

US motorcycle maker Harley-Davidson wis preparing to launch a takeover bid for Italian rival Ducati, potentially bringing together two of the most famous names in motorcycling in a deal potentially worth up to €1.5 billion ($1.67 billion), sources told Reuters.

Indian motorcycle maker Bajaj Auto and several buyout funds were also preparing bids for Ducati, which was being put up for sale by German carmaker Volkswagen.

A deal with Harley-Davidson would bring together the maker of touring bikes like the Electra Glide that were symbolic of America with a leading European maker whose high-performance bikes had a distinguished racing heritage.

Goldman Sachs had been hired by Milwaukee-based Harley-Davidson to work on the deal, according to one source familiar with the matter. He added, tentative bids were expected in July.

Volkswagen, whose Audi division controlled Ducati – maker of the iconic Monster motorbike was working with investment boutique Evercore on the sale, which will help it fund a strategic overhaul following its emissions scandal.

Ducati, based in the northern Italian city of Bologna, is being eyed by equity funds KKR, Bain Capital and Permira, which are all working on the deal, according to the sources who declined to be identified as the process was private.