Fiat Signs Deal With China's Chery; Cozying-up to Chrysler?
China's "you wanna do business here you gotta hire my nephew" policy towards foreign automakers is inadvertently bringing Chrysler and Fiat into close proximity. Forbes informs us that Fiat has just signed a letter of intent with China's Chery to build cars in [Homer Simpson's favorite Chinese town] Wuhu by 2009. In its normatively optimistic press release, Fiat claims the factory will produce 175k units in the first year, and double that the next. The deal follows Chrysler arrangement with Chery to produce a small car for the U.S. market. All of which takes us back to '88, when Fiat was going to sell Chrysler minivans in Europe and Chrysler was going to sell Alfa Romeos in America. Could the Chinese hook-up mean Fiat's long-awaited return stateside could come via a Chinese-made Alfa sports car sold through Chrysler dealerships? Now there's a thought.