A fresh report out of Europe suggests that Fiat will soon stop producing vehicles in Italy, instead opting to retool all of its plants in the country to build high-end vehicles from elsewhere in the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles group.
According to Bloomberg, FCA chief Sergio Marchionne – who is set to retire in 2019 – will formally announce the sweeping plan at the start of June 2018.
The move is expected to see Fiat abandon the Italian manufacture of budget vehicles such as the Punto (which is still built in its third generation for certain European markets) in favour of new upscale SUVs from fellow FCA group brands, Maserati and Jeep.
Production of the Fiat Panda in Pomigliano is expected to be shifted to Poland, with a new small Jeep set to take its place on the assembly line near Naples.
The report said that in addition to the Melfi plant ceasing production of the Punto, the Turin factory would stop making the Alfa Romeo Mito (which, rumour has it, will not be replaced). A second Maserati SUV, in an addition to the Levante already built there, is then likely to be produced in Turin.
The Fiat 500, of course, is not currently built in Italy, with production instead taking place in Poland and Mexico.
Ryan has spent most of his career in online media, writing about everything from sport to politics and other forms of crime. But his true passion – reignited by a 1971 Austin Mini Mk3 still tucked lifeless in a dark corner of his garage – is of the automotive variety.