- Alfa Romeo
- Aston Martin
- Land Rover
The Fiat 500 By by Gucci will make its official North American debut during New York Fashion Week that takes place between September 8th to September 15th. The collaboration between the two Italian brands for this limited edition 500 also coincides with Gucci’s 90th anniversary.
After a 27 year absence, Fiat has had a very successful launch in North America. Currently, the 500 is available in three trim levels, but the model range is set to expand next year with the introduction of the sporty Abarth version and an all-electric 500. Fiat will also launch a fifth vehicle in 2013, a four-door, five-seat, taller subcompact. This vehicle will be built on a larger platform but will still use the 500 in its nameplate. It will be marketed as a more family-oriented car within the Fiat lineup.
North America’s most famous Abarth and Fiat 500 tuner, Scagliarini Motorsports, is looking forward to helping all Americans spice up their Abarth and Fiat 500s to their liking. To demonstrate what they can do with the Italian subcompact coupe, Scagliarini Motorsports’ Managing Director Michael Salvarani came up with the Fiat 500 Coupe Zagato Elaborata or Scagliarini 504cze for short.
The American Abarth will get a 1.4-liter Multiair engine that will give it more power than its MINI Cooper rival—175 horsepower, to be exact. Fiat made the official announcement via its Twitter account, and just like on the elementary school playground, there’s no takesies-backsies after this.
Fiat has returned to the U.S after a nearly three-decade absence, and the Italian automaker is eager to make a positive impression on the American consumer. So far, dealers are happy with the initial sales of the 500 but see the need for more ad support to sustain long-term growth of the brand.
Today, the Ford Transit Connect is targeted at taxi and delivery business where fuel efficiency is a top priority. Initially, the small van was rated for 21 mpg on the city and 26 mpg in the highway. For 2012 Transit Connectgets a 1 mpg bump in each category, for a ratings of 22 mpg city and 27 mpg highway. This is good news considering the the competition in this class with the new Nissan NV200 and the rumoured Fiat Doblo (which would be sold under the Ram brand). No other improvements are expected until the all-new Transit Connect arrives on the market sometime in 2014.
Fiat has asked Chrysler to boost Freemont output after European demand soars for the rebadged Dodge Journey. Last June, with the Freemonts introduction, Fiat hoped to sell 13,000 of the minivans this year, however the automaker has already collected 15,700 orders. Fiat planned to sell 33,000 Freemonts in 2012 and as a result, Fiat was promised 3,000 Freemonts a month from Chryslers plant in Toluca, Mexico. With the high demand for the minivan, Chrysler boosted production to 4,067 units in June.
Former Pininfarina employees, Alessio Minchella and Alessandro Camorali have decided to team up and form a new company, Camal, in order to offer stylish new products for vehicles at prices affordable to the general population. There was no better way to launch the brand than to target the new Fiat 500 owners, giving the car a throwback look to the great glory days of old rally championships.
Sales for the Fiat 500 are picking up after a slow start in the US market. The Mexican built US version was off to a slow start after only selling 3,141 units through the end of May, but the cute Italian car is gaining momentum. Chrysler has just 70 Fiat dealerships nationwide however there are plans to open another 60 by the end of the year, which should help move more units.
On August 19th at Laguna Seca Golf Ranch, Monterey California, Concorso Italiano will open the traditional Monterey/Pebble Beach Weekend. The event will feature more than 800-1000 beautifully designed Italian cars on display. Enthusiasts can engage in conversations with fellow car lovers and enjoy Italian fashion, food and art. There will no doubt be an astonishing variety of Ferrari’s, Lamborghini’s, Maserati’s, Alfa Romeo’s, Pagani’s, and Lancia’s on display The event will run from 9:00am- 5:00 pm and admission will cost $130 per person.
Avid collectors of special edition Fiat 500’s may have to travel all the way to Japan to get their hands on one of 50 limited Pop-Bi 500s, for around $26,000. The exterior features a bumble bee-themed black and yellow finish and comes with either a fixed roof or retracting canvas panel.
Late Thursday night the US Treasury Department agreed to sell its remaining 6% stake in Chrysler to Fiat, with a price tag of $500 million. And with this decision, not only does the Italian carmaker control Chrysler, but now the government finally gets rid of its involvement with the auto industry, once and for all. “As Treasury exits its investment in Chrysler, it’s clear that President Obama’s decision to stand behind and restructure this company was the right one,” said Tim Geithner, Treasury Secretary.
Fiat already holds a not-insubstantial 46 percent share in Chrysler. But even though Chrysler and the U.S. and Canadian governments have finally completed business, the two still hold a 6.6% share in equity stakes, with 1.7% of that belonging to Canada and the rest to the U.S. Treasury Department.
Proving that you might actually be able to stop a train wreck that’s already in progress, under the stewardship of Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne, Chrysler has posted a profit. Blaming high interest rates on its government loans for not climbing into the black earlier, Marchionne today reported a net income of $116 million, compared to a net loss of $197 million in Q1 last year.
We don’t know if he read Forbes’ list of worst cars for 2011. All we do know is that he’s made his own list, and that he is called the Stig.
That’s right, Top Gear’s ‘the Stig’ has released his list of the worst five cars he’s ever driven, with some shocking surprises and some rather obvious ones. The Stig in question here is the second Stig or the White Stig, Ben Collins, who joined the show in 2003 after the Black Stig was killed off and who left the show last year.
The list includes a total of five cars, two American, two Italian and even one from the UK. Hit the jump for a brief summary.
In a statement from the auto maker, it says “Chrysler Group intends to complete the repayment during the second quarter of 2011 from proceeds of a new term loan facility and newly issued debt securities to be offered and sold to institutional investors in a private offering exempt from registration under the U.S. Securities Act of 1933.”
After re-launching in North America last year, Fiat has just introduced its second model to our shores, the 500 Cabrio. A ‘convertible’ version of the 500 hatchback, the Cabrio is a different sort of drop-top as it retains the factory roof structure, but with a retractable material top instead of sheetmetal. Because of that structure, the 500 Cabrio is unique in that it offers the exact same interior room as the original hatchback. Yet another advantage is that the material roof can be operated at speed of up to 60 mph.
In a joint statement Fiat and Chrysler have announced that the Italian automaker has now solidified a 30 percent stake in the American brand, up from the 25 percent share previously held. The increased ownership comes as Fiat achieved its latest milestone in resurrecting Chrysler after saving the company from bankruptcy in 2009. Fiat is looking to further grow its interest in Chrysler, with a goal to control 51% by year’s end.
Those who have been eagerly awaiting the return of the Alfa Romeo brand to North America will have to continue to be patient as the premium Fiat group brand won’t arrive in 2012 as previously planned. According to sources inside Alfa, the brand’s launch in the U.S. and Canada has been pushed back until 2013.
The California New Car Dealers Association is accusing Chrysler of operating a factory store illegally in the Los Angeles area. The showroom, dubbed Motor Village L.A., was designed to boost Chrysler’s profile and show off their revised product lineup, as well as the new Fiat brand.
Fiat’s 900cc TwinAir 2-cylinder turbocharged engine, currently available in the European market Fiat 500, has won critical acclaim for its performance and use of advanced technology, and the motor will soon be available in both the Alfa Romeo MiTo and Fiat Punto.
Fiat will reportedly launch the U.S.-spec version of the 500 Convertible at the New York Auto Show in late April, with the car going on sale almost immediately. Just in time for Spring, the drop-top is unique in that it retains the roof structure, but trades rear glass and a metal top for a retractable cloth section.
Some of that Fiat influence is sneaking into Jeep, and more of it than expected. The brand is planning to launch a supermini SUV to compete against the MINI Cooper and Audi A1 (and, by extension, the Fiat 500) that will be even smaller than the Wrangler, while aping its macho styling cues.
Creatively named the Fiat 500 by Gucci, the car is customized by Frida Giannini, the creative director of Gucci. The introduction of this special edition which features a Gucci inspired interior and some unique stripes, coincides with the 150th anniversary of Italy’s unification and also the 90th anniversary of the Gucci brand.
According to reports, Ferrari is looking to adapt Fiat’s MultiAir technology for its own use. This system uses hydraulic actuators to change the setup of the vavletrain, and this can be done while on the move. So you can tune your engine to be run lean one minute for greater fuel-efficiency, or mean to get the maximum power output.