>> Tuesday, February 17, 2009
This Italian-American mashup could bear some interesting fruit.
Fiat S.p.A and Chrysler LLC (backed by its majority stakeholder Cerberus Capital Management) today announced an alliance that will see the two automakers share vehicle platforms, distribution channels, and technology. Fiat will take a 35-percent stake in Chrysler, although no money will change hands, as Chrysler gives up a chunk of itself in return for viable future product development. (Chrysler's been broke for long enough that virtually all meaningful product development has been halted for some time.) The current agreement is nonbinding but should become a finalized partnership by April, according to Chrysler.
Fiat Group includes the bread-and-butter brands of Fiat, Lancia, and Alfa Romeo, with luxury and performance marques Maserati and Ferrari perched at the top of the empire. We would expect most of any platform sharing to come courtesy of the lesser three Italian companies, although a rundown on the alliance by Chrysler chairman and CEO Bob Nardelli states that his company would have access to all but Ferrari's bits and pieces. Would this open the door to a second coming of the legendary Chrysler TC by Maserati? Let's hope not.
Keep Reading: Fiat and Chrysler Announce Strategic Alliance - Car News