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."