Fiat to Axe Lancia Brand of Rebadged Chryslers

FiatChrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne made a series of significant announcements in a teleconference earlier today, not the least of which is the termination of the Lancia brand.

He made other sweeping changes known as well. Alfa Romeo and Maserati will work together, targeting the premium segment. Fiat is going to turn into a small-car brand, similar to how MINI fits into BMW’s portfolio. It will focus on the 500 and the Panda, offering numerous models of each. Meanwhile, Jeep will have a broader product portfolio and ostensibly be sold in more markets around the world.

With all the financial turmoil in Europe these days it’s not surprising Marchionne thinks Fiat-Chrysler will post a loss next year; it’s estimated at $900 million. He does not expect to turn a profit until 2015 at the earliest.

As for Lancia, it will live on for awhile at least, according to one Chrysler spokesman. It is unlikely significant amounts of money will be invested in it. Right now half of its lineup consists of rebadged Chryslers including versions of the Town & Country, 300 sedan and 200 convertible.

[Source: The Truth About Cars]

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