SOURCE"The plan is confirmed," Gorlier told reporters, when asked if FCA's investment in electric vehicle technology would remain unchanged after its $35 billion plan to merge with Renault, an electric car pioneer, collapsed last month.
He said FCA would invest the 700 million euros to build a new production line at Mirafiori to turn out 80,000 of the new 500 BEV, its first battery electric vehicle to be marketed in Europe after a smaller, initial foray in the United States.
Production will start in the second quarter of 2020, with capacity to be expanded later, Gorlier said.
The 500 compact car is one of the group's most famous models, launched by Fiat in the late 1950s and quickly becoming a symbol of Italian urban design.
The 700 million euros investment is part of a plan announced last year to invest 5 billion euros in Italy up to 2021.
In abandoning its merger offer for Renault, FCA blamed French politics for scuttling what would have been a landmark deal to create the world's third-biggest automaker.
SOURCEThe decision comes as little surprise for anybody who has paid even a passing interest in Fiat’s performance in the US over the past year or so. In June 2019, for example, Fiat sold a mere ten of its 500 cars, half the number from the same month the year previous. For the year so far, Fiat has sold just 69 of the cars, down 57-percent compared to this point in 2018.