A group led by former Ford Motor Co
The group, called Crown consortium, is led by former Ford director Michael Dingman and former Ford and Chrysler LLC
Crown had been seen as an underdog at best but had been encouraged by Ford if it could find the necessary funding, the paper added.
Ford was not available for comment by Reuters outside regular U.S. business hours.
The paper said its sources declined to give the amount of Crown's bid but described it as on par with the Geely offer.
Geely was picked as the preferred bidder for Ford's Volvo unit with its $1.8 billion bid.
(Reporting by Santosh Nadgir in Bangalore; Editing by Valerie Lee)