Fiat S.p.A. announced earlier this week that it expects to increase its stake in Chrysler Group, currently at 53.5% to 58.5% by the end of 2011, pending the achievement of a previously set performance goal.
What's the goal? Only the development of a Fiat-based vehicle that can manage fuel efficiency of 40 mpg in the U.S., which is the equivalent of 48 miles per gallon on the UK scale, or, in European numbers, 5.88 liters per 100 kilometers.
The group, which also reinforced its goal of six million vehicles by 2014, also confirmed this year's projections and plans, which include revenues over 58 billion euros with 18 billion euros of liquidity.
On Monday, September 19th, Fiat and Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne made a statement to the press that his group had enough liquidity to weather the current financial crisis, though he admitted that like other major auto industry players, his company has also been affected by concerns of reduced revenues due to a global economic slowdown.
Marchionne, who is widely credited with Fiat's turn-around since he took charge, has plans to use Chrysler to make his company into a serious global player. To that end, the group has a goal of $144.2 billion (100 billion euros) in combined revenue by 2014.
Marchionne seems to be on track to do that. Since taking over the management of Chrysler during a bailout deal two years ago he's increased Fiat's stake in the American company faster and less expensively than anyone had anticipated.
Nevertheless, Fiat still has to form a plan for the rest of Chrysler, as 41.5 percent of the company is still owned by VEBA, the trust fund for the United Auto Workers union. Fiat has an option to buy 40% of that stake, beginning in June, 2012.