|Fiat is planning a factory in the US|
15.12.2007, Virtanen Matti
|By Yoann Besnard /petrol-head.com|
In an interview with Automotive News Europe, Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne has revealed that Alfa Romeo might build a new factory in the US in order to counter-balance the weak dollar. “It was already expensive when the dollar was 1.10 to the euro; now it is more expensive (1.40)“ he told the magazine.
He also said that Alfa Romeo will lose money on the American market the first three-four years due to a weak dollar but also to the highly competitive market there. He also gave the reasons why he considered bidding for the Jaguar and Land Rover sale. According to him, the most interesting asset in both companies for Fiat were their large dealer network while Alfa Romeo will have to rely on the tiny Maserati network the first years. The situation might improve if Tata Motors wins the bid. Indeed, the Indian car maker has set up a partnership with Fiat and is being advised on its bid by the Italian car maker.
Before building a new factory, Alfa Romeo has to focus on improving the quality of its products and reduce loss. It has taken a first step by closing Alfa's main factory at Pomigliano d'Arco in southern Italy for two months beginning in January as an effort to get Alfa Romeo build quality up to German standard. The loss will likely be reduced by the launch of the baby Alfa next year.