Maserati SpA and Audi AG announce a strategic partnership that could pave the way for Maserati to develop its Kubang SUV concept, shown at the North American International Auto Show in January.

The agreement, which does not contain an exchange of equity between the companies, enables Audi to utilize Maserati's Quattroporte platform for future products, while Maserati gets access to Audi's Quattro all-wheel-drive system, components, finance operations and a potential future SUV platform.

Maserati still has to decide, likely by year's end, on whether to build the Kubang. The agreement makes the decision to build the Kubang easier, since the platform will be shared with a potential future Audi SUV. Audi showed its Pike's Peak concept earlier this year, which could share its underpinnings with the Kubang.

The alliance also calls for Audi to provide diesel engines to be used in the Kubang, as well as other component sharing. This will enable Maserati to reduce its investment costs by utilizing tested components from Audi suppliers.