By on March 24, 2010


Media from Associated Press to The Business Standard of India are abuzz with reports that Fiat (the company) is planning to cut 5000 jobs and will be spinning off its car division this summer. The stock market seems to like the idea: Fiat’s shares rose 4.15 percent.

The job cuts will affect the car division’s 30,000 employees. The Italian Newspaper La Repubblica [sub] reports that union sources believe that a further 2000 – 2500 workers will be made redundant at Fiat’s plant in Turin and another 500 will be laid off at Pomigliano. According to two analysts, what drove Fiat’s share price up weren’t the job cuts, but the rumour that they’ll spin off the car division sooner, rather than later. Does the market believe that the car division is a toxic element to the rest of the company? Well, any entity which is invested in Chrysler is probably going to be treated like a ginger-haired stepchild.

Fiat on the other hand isn’t in the mood to entertain La Repubblica’s story, dismissing the 5000 job losses as “absolutely premature and groundless.” Sergio Marchionne said “we are still working,” (well, at least they haven’t been fired) and that “it’s just speculation in the papers and whatever I might say would be incomplete.” Premature, maybe. But most premature babies tend to grow into screaming little monsters …

UPDATE: Reuters reports that

In the United States, where Fiat has taken a stake in struggling carmaker Chrysler, the Italian group would seek to produce seven models using the brands Fiat, Lancia and Alfa Romeo for a total production of more than 350,000 units.

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13 Comments on “Fiat: Premature Eviction? [UPDATE: Production Moving To North America?]...”


  • avatar
    Brian E

    But most premature babies tend to grow into screaming little monsters …

    Someone doesn’t like kids much!

    In the United States, where Fiat has taken a stake in struggling carmaker Chrysler, the Italian group would seek to produce seven models using the brands Fiat, Lancia and Alfa Romeo for a total production of more than 350,000 units.

    What about the Dodge and Chrysler brands? Have they finally decided to dispense with those publicly, or are they waiting until it’s politically viable to finally ‘fess up to it?

    Not that I care. Almost anything which results in Alfa coming back to the US is fine by me.

  • avatar
    JMII

    Lancia? OOOhhhh… I can see it now: The (Dodge) Lancia Caliber AWD decked out with rally lights, a lifted stance and a turbo. That just might work.

    And yes I’m joking.

  • avatar
    PeriSoft

    Fiat’s shares rose 4.15 percent.

    Victory by Fiat?

  • avatar
    pgcooldad

    Toyota closes a plant in the USA and boots out 5000 Americans into the unemployment lines and that’s a shrewd business move according to a few here. All the while not a single job will be lost in Japan while they import 50% of their sales here in the good ol’ USA.

    Fiat on the other hand will build cars here, and create jobs here while cutting them in it’s home country of Italy and all that can be said is, “Well, any entity which is invested in Chrysler is probably going to be treated like a ginger-haired stepchild”.

    In addition, the 300C saloon, Sebring saloon and cabrio and Voyager minivan will be rebadged as Lancias and sold in Italy from 2011. They will also be sold as Chryslers outside Italy.
    The Dodge Nitro will be rebadged and sold in Europe by this year, and the Journey crossover will go on sale in Europe in spring 2011.

    How many USA built Toyotas, Hondas, Subarus … are sold in Japan?? …. Zero. BRAVO FIAT!! I hope there won’t be job losses anywhere in Italy and thanks for trusting Americans and Canadians to build Alfas.

    • 0 avatar

      The Dodge Nitro will be rebadged and sold in Europe by this year, and the Journey crossover will go on sale in Europe in spring 2011.

      They may be rebadged, but I doubt they’ll be sold, because nobody will be buying them. The Journey, maybe, depends how much content and what the interior is like, but the Nitro, a couple of features like the slide out storage tray in the back notwithstanding, is just not a very good vehicle.

      If they have to sell that platform in Europe, sell the Jeep version and use some of Jeep’s brand equity.

    • 0 avatar
      Tricky Dicky

      pgcooldad – if GM hadn’t of walked out of NUMMI leaving effectively a lead balloon behind, then the plant would still be running. I bet the %ge of sales to imports ratio in the US is much greater for Hyundai.

    • 0 avatar
      pgcooldad

      When GM walked out of NUMMI it gave Toyota 100% control of the plant. So what do they do … close it.
      My point is Toyota imports 50% of what they sell here in the USA from Japan and they should shift production from Japan to NUMMI. They won’t, and Cammy and company will call that a wise business move but will be first to take an indirect jab at Fiat-Chrysler for the reverse… build them here and ship them to Italy and Europe.

      I’m hoping that Fiat will have some vehicles built they there that can be shipped here so no one loses their job … that’s called balanced trade unlike the Japanese who would never build anything here and ship to Japan. Again, BRAVO FIAT!!

    • 0 avatar
      Znork

      Err, the Nitro, 300C, Sebring, Voyager etc are all already sold in Europe. With the exception of the Voyager, none of them are doing well. The Nitro is doing especially poor, mostly because it’s utter rubbish.

  • avatar
    Robert.Walter

    “ginger-haired stepchild” or, “wood-headed-stepchild”, as my 50-year-old sister said one day, to neck-snapping double-takes all-around…

  • avatar
    djn

    Is it such a great surprise that another European car maker wants build cars in a country that has cheaper production costs than Old Europe? Did you trash BMW and Mercedes when they chose to build cars here? Fiat is expanding production in other lower cost areas, Serbia, Poland, Brazil, Mexico, India. Smart move. Lancia is a near luxury brand, the kind of higher value cars that we build most efficiently.

  • avatar
    Accazdatch

    Ive been wondering how Fiat is doing…

    And now.. I wonder how ya can stuff a round peg into a square hole…

    Doesnt seem to be working…

  • avatar
    jimboy

    Sergio is simply continuing the work he promised to do for both Chrysler and Fiat, increasing production, simplifying platforms, reducing costs through shared resources and aligning product for both Europe and America. Why is this a problem for anyone here? It sounds like a good business plan that any Chief Executive would implement. I applaud his willingness to take flak from the unions in Italy and to thumb his nose at American pundits who can’t find their arsehole’s with a piece of toilet paper! If anyone thinks that other automakers aren’t working just as hard to accomplish the very same objectives, you’ve been reading the wrong articles. I don’t think the Chrysler vehicles will be simply rebadged for Europe or Italy, either. Most of them will have been made over, (as planned) before they are released in Europe. ( 300, Sebring, T&C/Voyager, Nitro) And, considering the fact that Daimler currently handles Chrysler’s sales in Europe, 54,000 units is a freaking miracle!

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