A few months ago Keith Crain wrote in a column on this page: "Today's darling in terms of consumption just might become tomorrow's nightmare as a competitor."
Today we are reporting that China's Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp. wants to buy UK carmaker MG Rover.
If that marriage takes place, a strong, new player will enter the European market, changing the nature of the competition here.
On its own, MG Rover was doomed to remain a niche player. No partnerships with the likes of Malaysia's Proton or India's Tata would have saved it from that fate. In fact, most industry insiders didn't see a future for MG Rover at all.
But as part of an aggressive and globally ambitious company such as SAIC, the picture changes radically. For MG Rover, there would be money to further develop the important Rover 45. For SAIC, the acquisition would establish a bridge into Europe.
European automakers, who already have a hard time defending their home turf against import brands, should prepare now for even more Asian competition.
SAIC wants to become one of the world's largest automakers in the next 15 years. If it buys MG Rover, Europe will be the first place it will start its global expansion.