Fiat was the automaker that sold the most cars in Brazil in 2022. And part of this success is because the company has complete autonomy and outlines its strategies separately from the matrix, which is in Italy. With an eye on this great performance, the manufacturer can unify the lines of cars sold in Brazil and Europe to maximize profits in the Old Continent.
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And who has this idea is precisely the boss of Fiat, Olivier François. In an interview with the portal of the British magazine Auto Express, the executive understands that aligning the production of the two markets can make the European Fiat make profits more regularly, in the same way as happens with the Brazilian subsidiary.
“There is no way for Fiat to become regularly profitable – it is profitable now, but we want to increase that – if we don’t unify our European and Brazilian lineup. We will start in 2024, 2025 and 2026 with cars that are already defined in design and other components We are going to have a single line of models. They can be electric in one region, combustion in another, with small differences, which allows us to make gigantic volumes using the same base”, said François.
The “base” to which the executive refers is the CMP, a platform developed by Peugeot (today part of the Stellantis group) and which gives rise to models such as the Peugeot e-208, Peugeot e-2008 and the recently launched Jeep Avenger, which should arrive in Brazil later this year and uses a variant of this base, the STLA.
The great advantage of CMP is that it can be the basis for electric, hybrid and combustion cars with the same efficiency. Going in the wake of what François said, a Fiat Pulse, for example, could go to the European market to replace the current Fiat Tipo, but as a small electric SUV. Here, as we know, it is flex.
On the other hand, the new generation of Fiat Punto, already under development in Italy, can become the new generation of Fiat Argo, which is starting to lag well compared to compact rivals in our market.
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Fiat has been in the Brazilian market for many years and knew very well how to work here, selling hugely successful models, such as the Fiat Uno Mille, Fiat Palio, Fiat Strada and many others. The secret: producing popular vehicles designed for Brazil.
Whenever I brought European projects, such as the Fiat Bravo, Fiat Tempra and the feared Fiat Marea, even though they were excellent cars and much more refined, the adaptation in our market, with our infrastructure and our mechanics, was not good.
If the strategy of the Italian matrix is to unify the productions and change only the names and regional production details, the path may be a natural improvement of the models sold here and a simplification of what will arrive in Europe. If it’s going to work, it’s another five hundred.