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Fiat sales goals go into overdrive

From Shanghai Daily| July 02 , 2007
FIAT Group expects China sales revenue to jump more than five times by 2010 from last year.
Italy's biggest industrial group is targeting US$5.5 billion sales revenue in China by 2010, compared with US$1 billion last year, Douglas Schenk, chief executive officer of Fiat (China) Business Co Ltd, said at the weekend.
Revenue from passenger cars would account for US$3 billion, leaving US$1.5 billion for trucks and US$1 billion for spare parts and other operations, Schenk said.
As the group's major business unit, Fiat Auto is eager to revive its brand, sustain global sales momentum and fast-track operations in China where annual sales growth has averaged 25 percent in the past three years, off a low base.

Fiat Group last year announced plans to invest 500 million euros (US$677 million) over five years in a drive to gain 4.5 percent market share and meet its 2010 China sales goal of 300,000 vehicles, nearly one-tenth of estimated global sales of 3.5 million units.
"The market is sustainable and Fiat's objective is conservative to the huge growth in China," said Andrew J. Humberstone, chief China representative of Fiat Group Automobiles SpA.
Turin-based Fiat partners Nanjing Automobile Corp in a joint venture, Nanjing Fiat, producing Siena, Palio and Perla compact cars.
Its 2010 target has been challenged by flat sales of 44,230 units last year in the joint venture after an eight-year build-up. Fiat chief executive Sergio Marchionne earlier blamed Nanjing Auto for delaying investment after concentrating on developing its self-branded models.
Instead of quitting the partnership, Fiat is reported to have reconciled with Nanjing Auto and each party will invest three billion yuan (US$395 million) to add production capacity and new models in the joint venture.
"We want to introduce our latest models as soon as possible and reach all segments to meet customer profile expectation," Humberstone said.

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