The news about the upcoming Association of Italian-American and French companies has generated a flurry of publications in the global business press, analysts talk about how a new automotive Empire, led by the Portuguese Carlos Tavares, dispose of their 14 brands: Abarth, Alfa Romeo, Chrysler, Citroen, Dodge, DS, Fiat, Jeep, Lancia, Maserati, Opel, Peugeot, Ram, and Vauxhall. It is believed that a bright future will take not all.
In the pile of figures that we cited in yesterday’s article, in fact the official statement on the merger of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and Groupe PSA, and operated by intelligence, zhivopisuya the future of the new auto giant, the most interesting seem to be those that lead the American edition of the Detroit News. General Motors Corporation to issue 8.4 million cars a year requires 180 thousand employees, and the combined FCA-PSA for the production of 8.7 million Masha employs 400 thousand people. Obviously, this disparity must have something to do, otherwise the economic efficiency for the sake of which, actually began the merger, it is possible not to dream. Representatives of both the merging companies have stated that no mass closure of factories, but some optimization will certainly be, and in the future, possibly quite hard.
Recall that in 2017 Groupe PSA absorbed the German brand Opel, and before the end of it is not digested, but has already managed to make profitable. This has been achieved including by reducing staff, which had to go in spite of the groans of German trade unions. Until the end of the formal completion of the transaction between the FCA and PSA, i.e. in the next year, mass layoffs and other drastic steps, of course not, but then begin an inevitable and sometimes very painful process of integration.
At the moment, according to Automotive News, made only one major decision 2/3 of the total volume of produced vehicles will be based only on two platforms, and both platforms French: CMP subcompact and compact EMP2. This means that virtually all the European wing of the FCA will move to these two modular “truck”, and that in the coming years you can not expect from the brands Peugeot, Citroen, Opel and Fiat crossovers with mechanical all-wheel drive, which is so popular among us.
The CMP and the EMP2 platform is simply not designed for all-wheel drive with cardan shaft under the floor, but in Europe it is, in fact, do not need anyone, but the ability to build on these platforms, cars with any type of propulsion (diesel, petrol, hybrid, electric) is very useful in light of the upcoming tightening in Europe standards CO2 emissions – without popular and affordable models with zero exhaust manufacturers will have to pay huge fines to the cashier in the European Union. So, Reuters cites Agency PA Consulting, according to which, if the FCA will remain in Europe, their current model line, it will be forced to pay in fines to 430 million euros annually.
Meanwhile, the FCA has its own electric subcompact platform that will underpin the new Fiat 500 (the premiere is expected next spring, at the Geneva motor show). Her fate in light of the merger with Groupe PSA is unclear, but quite possible she will be “disposable”, i.e. other machines we do not see.
Make Alfa Romeo partly, too, can use a French “truck” CMP and EMP2 for their younger models, but for luxury-Maserati models they are not suitable still the development plan is likely to remain in force.
Most questions are concerned with the future of the European brands Abarth and Lancia. The latter is popular only in Italy and hardly deserves the investment, but as a niche electric brand can still survive. The name Abarth is poorly fit in with the “green” theme, but this brand can save personally Tavares – the work at Renault he was pressing the issue of the revival of Alpine, so you might want to keep the Abarth in the portfolio of FCA-PSA as a “favorite toy”. If the brand closes, it will in any case remain a niche making machine for the few fans available regarding purebred sports cars – a significant impact on the overall environmental performance of the combined company they will have, and the drive to them if you wish, “tie” is possible.
To that the platform of Peugeot, Citroen, Opel, Vauxhall, DS, Fiat and maybe a Lancia, then a reasonable question arises, wouldn’t they too similar to each other? In a technical sense, of course, will be, but with the design of the French and the Italians never had any problems – as they say, can draw so that the mother would not know. In any case, the model line Peugeot, Citroen and DS today have fundamentally different aesthetics, and the FCA have proved that Fiats can do absolutely unique in terms of design models for the United States under the brands Dodge and Chrysler – that they demand, unfortunately, doesn’t…
It’s time to go back to America. Frodna brand Jeep and Ram picana are now at the peak of his success, and in the future they will retain their unique platform that requires mechanical all-wheel drive. The range of Ram can be expanded at the expense of mid-size pick-up (this segment in the US is considered promising), the basis for which will serve the new van Peugeot developed jointly with the Chinese company Changan.
Dodge brand is probably partially intermarry with Alfa Romeo and Maserati – the new-generation Charger and Challenger can move to the Italian premium “truck” with longitudinal power unit and to inherit from them the long-awaited filigree handling.
A Prime candidate for the shooting – Chrysler brand, in a portfolio where there are only two models – the 300 large sedan and minivan Pacifica. Once Chrysler was making luxurious cars to compete with Cadillac, but now from former greatness there’s nothing left. In the U.S. Chrysler’s sales are falling rapidly (down 23% in the third quarter of this year), the brand positioning is blurred.
But Chrysler may be useful to attack FCA-PSA in China. Now the position of both companies in China is weak, and Chrysler with the proper investment, can be China’s competitor to the Buick G. anowski brand feels very confident and is selling about five times more cars than in the United States (2018 – 1 068 863 199 and 206 units respectively). However, the trend in the Chinese market is now negative and, possibly, the management of FCA-PSA decides to focus on other foreign markets in South America and Africa, where the positions of the mass brands FCA-PSA sturdy enough.
Well, what? What do we get from the merger of FCA and PSA? Most likely, in the next few years did not change significantly, but in the future can expect a much more active promotion of American and Italian brands. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles on our country, by and large, scored, whereas Groupe PSA displays extraordinary perseverance in the quest to stay here and work. Of course, the choice of the new development strategy will take years, and in the country and in the world can happen anywhere.