With the normal ups and downs in a bankruptcy procedure, the latest bump on the road from a few fund management companies that briefly halted the merger is now back on the road and getting towards the finish line.
The gist is that much rides on the shoulders of this deal. Chrysler will get its hands on smaller fuel efficient vehicles, something it desperately needs if it was to compete and Fiat gets an open invitation to the U.S.. And for those who still have lingering feelings about the reliability of Fiat in the 70s and 80s, not too many cars were that reliable back then. Those problems have long been tackled and the latest Fiat cars are as solid products.
Bankruptcy, Final Stage. Now that we are in the final stages of the new and improved Chrysler Fiat company, the company formerly known as Chrysler LLC will become Chrysler Group LLC. Fiat in returns gets issued a 20% equity interest that includes a transfer of some of the technology, platforms and powertrains to the new Chrysler group.
Technically Speaking. The Chrysler group will be headed by Marchionne, the Fiat CEO who will be managed by a nine-member Board of Directors, 3 appointed by Fiat, 4 by the US Government, 1 by the Canadian Government and 1 by the United Auto Workers’ Retiree Medical Benefits Trust, with C. Robert Kidder as Chairman. Here is the muddied waters. Chrysler will be working with GMAC Financial Services to finance its products and services to dealers and customers. The ties between GM and Chrysler are interesting.
In the end, the foundation seems solid enough to go into this market and weather more storms. Chrysler having access to Fiat’s light transportation platforms means the work already done on the Dodge Circuit could be successfully completed and manufactured sooner than expected. One thing we can expect from this deal are more Fiat derived Chrysler re-branded vehicles that will be at first economical internal combustion engines, ICE with more hybrids, HEV and introduction of plug-in hybrids, PHEV and finally a few pure electric vehicles, EV rolling out the line. Well, that is if all goes according to plans.