Number of Cylinders: 4
Drive Type: manual
Yorkshire, United Kingdom
Fiat is one step closer to completing a merger with Chrysler after exercising an option to acquire an additional 3.3 percent of the Auburn Hills-based automaker today. Automotive News reports that Fiat now controls 68.49-percent of Chrysler, which is up almost 10 percent since we last heard news of this deal back in February when Fiat talking to various banks to raise more capital in order to complete the acquisition.
The article says that Fiat is still able to increase its stake in Chrysler up to 75 percent over the next 12 months, but it sounds like CEO Sergio Marchinonne would rather purchase the remaining shares from VEBA - the retiree benefits trust - sooner rather than later. Unfortunately, the two sides still seem far from an agreement on a fair price for the rest of Chrysler, as Fiat has them valued at $4.2 billion compared to the $10.3 billion estimate from the unions that currently own the remaining stake in Chrysler.
Automotive News reports Fiat-Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne has issued a written apology for his comments regarding his decision to stick with an Italian engine for the upcoming Alfa Romeo 4C. As you may recall, back in January, Marchionne was quoted as saying, "I cannot come up with a schlock product, I just won't. I won't put an American engine into that car. With all due respect to my American friends, it has to be a wop engine." The CEO penned an apology to the Italian American ONE VOICE Coalition for using the racial epithet, saying that he made the comment in jest. Marchionne also said he realizes his remarks were unacceptable.
ONE VOICE, an organization aimed at fighting discrimination and stereotyping of Italian Americans, thanked Marchionne, Chrysler and Fiat for the apology. Marchionne is an Italian-born Canadian citizen, and he's gotten in trouble for other comments in the past. In 2011, he called high interest rates Chrysler was paying to the Canadian government "shyster rates." He apologized a day later.
Details remain scarce, but our spy photographers have managed to capture the upcoming Jeep B-segment crossover for the first time, testing in both the Alps and in the US. Shown here as a cobbled-together Fiat 500L mule, the new Jeep model is expected to arrive for the 2015 model year and act as a replacement for the current Compass and Patriot models.
According to our shooter, the new "baby Jeep" will share a platform with the Fiat 500X, and both models will be built on the same assembly line in Turin, Italy. We can't tell much from these images, but the added length apparent on this 500L mule would seem to dispel the recent speculation that the new entry-level Jeep model would be sized closer to the Ford Fiesta - since the 500L is already considerably larger than the Fiesta. Powertrain options will likely mirror other Fiat/Chrysler collaborative vehicles like the Dodge Dart, but this Jeep will also try to live up to its off-road roots with an optional all-wheel-drive system.