Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne should get ready for the next task ahead – turn all-wheel drive specialist Jeep into a brand with worldwide appeal.
Automotive analysts and industry observers have now turned their skeptical eye on Marchionne’s plan for the Jeep strategy – the five-year business plan from May has a very ambitious goal: double the brand’s sales before 2018.
Marchionne’s aggressive threshold stands at an annual delivery volume of 1.9 million units by 2018, although analysts surveyed by Reuters see a far lower average – about 1.2 million Jeep vehicles.
“I have all the best intentions” of reaching the 1.9 million mark, commented Marchionne on Monday, the first day of trading for the shares of the consolidated Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. The executive is even bullish about it, claiming on an interview with Bloomberg TV they “may even blow through it.”
The reality is that if Jeep manages to make it even at the analyst predicted level, the specialist brand would become the largest in the company’s portfolio, reaching around 25% of the automaker’s sales volume. That’s a quota for the analyst forecasted total sales by 2018: 5.1 million vehicles annually, as opposed to FCA’s internal goal of 7 million units.