ACEA elects Sergio Marchionne as president for 2012

ACEA elects Sergio Marchionne as president for 2012

02/12/2011 in News, All News, Car Manufacturer News

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Sergio Marchionne, chief executive of Fiat Group and Chrysler Group, has been appointed as the president of the European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA) for 2012.

Marchionne said: “The year 2012 will be challenging especially if the instability in the Eurozone would not be addressed.

"Our association will further focus its work on three main issues: European industrial policy; sustainable mobility and transport; and international trade relations.

“These issues are all closely linked as the industry's capacity to invest and innovate depends on a strong, competitive manufacturing base in Europe.”

Marchionne takes over from Dieter Zetsche, chairman of the board of Daimler AG and head of Mercedes-Benz Cars Division, who served as ACEA President in 2010 and 2011.

Zetsche said: “The European automotive industry is a major employer and invests over 30 billion EUR in R&D per year - more than any other industry in Europe.

"The importance of our industry must be reflected in the EU's economic, transport and trade policies."

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Fiat has enjoyed steadily increasing market share since 2012, partly the result of new products and the continued appeal of the evergreen 500.

The Bravo medium hatchback always struggled to stand out in a crowded sector but customers seem to have warmed to the 500L and its increasing number of variants, while a new Panda in 2012 also gave Fiat another strong competitor in the A-sector and more reasons for customers to visit one of the 250-plus dealers.

Dealer ratings for the franchise have also been steadily improving over the past two years.
Fiat will benefit from fresh products under the Fiat Chrysler Group’s recently announced plans for the next few years, but Jeep and Alfa Romeo are currently receiving the most attention internally.

About 30 dealers also hold the high-performance Abarth franchise, which is rumoured to also have fresh products in the pipeline.

Note: Manufacturers administer the franchised contracts for cars and LCVs in different ways. Broadly, for some the contract to sell cars and LCVs is managed through a separate dealer contract. For others one contract covers both vehicle types.

AMi seeks to acknowledge the difference and reflect it in the count of each dealer groups total franchised outlets (franchised businesses) and sites (locations).

Fiat treats car and LCV sales as coming under separate contracts –AMi counts each individually.

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Chrysler, as part of the Fiat Group, has had a reducing presence in the UK. Its Lancia-based supermini, the Ypsilon, and its Delta lower-medium hatchback haven’t really made an impression, despite offering competitive fuel consumption and CO2 emissions and a high quality interior.

The Grand Voyager people carrier looks expensive and uncompetitive on CO2 emissions, while the 300C saloon has moved upmarket on price, but it still lacks the badge appeal of premium rivals in the executive car sector.

The Chrysler brand, while it still has a presence in the UK, has fewer new products in the immediate future and its long-time partner brand Jeep is being paired up with Alfa Romeo in many franchises.

Chrysler sales and market share have been falling since 2012, so a major strategy and product revamp is needed before things will improve.

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