Almost exactly a month ago we asked:
Fiatsler is bringing Fiat back to the US as a one-model-brand (500) with a dedicated sales and support staff just to meet one of these government benchmarks… will they be crazy enough to build an engine in Michigan and ship them to Mexico to meet another?
The short answer: of course. Fiat gets five percent of Chrysler’s equity for building the engine in the states, but unless there are unrevealed US-market applications for an engine with 92 lb-ft of torque, they’ll all be shipped to Mexico and installed in Fiat 500s. According to Marchionne, half of the Toluca, Mexico Fiat 500 production will be sold in the US with the other half going to Brazil. For a guy who regularly bemoans the poor strategic positioning of Fiat’s factory sites, Marchionne is surprisingly willing to bend a few principles for five percent of Chrysler’s equity. Will it work? Sergio is still asking for time, telling reporters “by the end of 2011 and in early 2012, you should be able to tell how our plan is working.”