Fiat Chrysler is open to mergers and partnerships, but will not sell luxury brand Maserati.
It’s been speculated at for months that Fiat Chrysler might sell their ailing luxury brand, Maserati, so long as the price is right. Reports from last November had prominent FCA investors calling for the company to shed their ailing high-end marque and focus on their more profitable businesses.
FCA’s new CEO Mike Manley shut down that possibility while speaking with reporters in Geneva last Tuesday. When asked if he would sell Maserati to Chinese automaker Geely Automotive Group, Manley was very firm.
"Maserati is one of our really beautiful brands and it has an incredibly bright future. ... No."
However, Manley was more conciliatory to the possibility of FCA entering into a partnership with a different car manufacturer, or even entering into a merger. "We have a strong independent future, but if there is a partnership, a relationship or a merger which strengthens that future, I will look at that," Manley said.
Former Jeep CEO Mike Manley took the reigns at FCA after the untimely death of former boss, Sergio Marchionne. Under Manley, Jeep sales increased from 320,000 in 2009 to 1.23 million by 2015. There are high hopes that Manley can continue that performance at the helm of the larger company.
Last week, Bloomberg reported that French carmaker PSA were looking to Fiat as a possible partner to breaking back into the American market. PSA Group owns Peugeot, Citroën, DS, Opel, and the Vauxhall brands, and found that Jeep would be a very good way to round out their offerings.
PSA is also looking at GM and Jaguar Land Rover, who are losing money like a sieve for their Indian parent company, Tata Motors.
Manley also discussed how FCA would handle ever-increasing emissions regulations in Europe and California. "There are three options. You can sell enough electrified vehicles to balance your fleet. Two: You can be part of a pooling scheme. Three is to pay the fines," he said, further explaining that FCA would take the cheapest option of the three, whichever that turns out to be.