Abarth Fiat 500C

Abarth Fiat 500C

It isn’t any secret that President Barack Obama toured Chrysler’s Jefferson North Assembly Plant this past week. It is also no secret that this was one of a couple of tours the President was on of the American car companies. After he spoke at Chrysler, Sergio Marchionne, CEO of Fiat and Chrysler, spoke to the press and gave comment on the coming of Fiat and Alfa Romeo to U.S. dealerships. The logical place for the Italian brands to show up is at a Chrysler dealership, however Marchionne says they may turn up elsewhere too.

Here is the skinny; Marchionne said last week, “I think there's going to be a large part of the distribution that will be part of the Chrysler environment. There may be others that will not” be Chrysler dealers.” Does that mean we could see the Fiat 500 being sold side-by-side with the MINI Cooper? The chances for that aren’t likely, but you could very well see them being sold along side the Maserati, Ferrari, Lotus type of vehicles. Other comments made by the CEO were that dealers that get Fiat might also get Alfa Romeo, a brand scheduled to relaunch in the U.S. in 2012.

The dealer network is a critical part of Fiat’s success in the States, however, it is encouraging to learn via Automotive News that Chrysler has already begun to make pre-production versions of the Fiat 500 in its Toluca, Mexico, factory. The factory is said to be on schedule and the company believes they will be ready for full volume production late this year. Just in case you missed it, the final versions of the Fiat 500 that will come to the U.S. are as follows: Base two-door hatch, convertible, performance Abarth and a four-door hatch. MINI all we have to say is: “The Italian are coming, the Italian are coming!”

Be sure to check out our latest article on the L.A. Auto Show and how the Fiat 500 fits in by clicking here.


[Source: Automotive News]