General Motors Corp could give away a controlling stake in its European unit as it decides whether to file for bankruptcy, the Financial Times newspaper reported on Monday.

Rather than seeking money for Opel/Vauxhall, the automaker would ask any buyer to pledge to invest directly in a new company formed from its European operations, the report said, citing two unnamed people familiar with the plans.

An investor will be asked to pay at least 500 million euros ($655.5 million) in equity, but GM will realize no financial gain as the money will be injected directly into Opel, the report said.

The company is also prepared to sell its Swedish brand Saab, for nothing, the report added.

No one at GM's UK unit Vauxhall could immediately be reached for comment on the report.

GM has been operating under $13.4 billion of emergency U.S. government aid.

Under the terms of the rescue, the company has until June 1 to prepare deep cuts in its debt, labor costs, dealership network and brands to return to profitability.

(Reporting by Peter Griffiths; Editing by Jan Paschal)