Fiat gets another 5 percent of Chrysler, controls 58.5 percent now image

The Italian automaker Fiat SpA On Thursday announced that has increased its stake in Chrysler Group LLC by 5 percent to 58.5 percent, from 53.5 percent (fully diluted), upon the Company’s achievement of the final of three performance-related milestones.

CEO Sergio Marchionne will now set his sights on acquiring the remaining 41.5% stake held by the United Auto Workers’ health-care trust fund.

The executive said the new acquisition “represents repayment of the trust placed in Fiat to introduce its fuel-efficient cars and engines to the U.S. market.,”

“The acquisition of a further 5 percent of Chrysler is a fundamental step in completion of the integration between our two groups.”

The U.S. based automaker Chrysler said earlier that a pre-production version of the new Dodge Dart compact got 40 mpg in testing by the Environmental Protection Agency in late December.
Yesterday Chrysler issued an irrevocable commitment to the U.S. Department of the Treasury to begin assembly of such vehicle in a production facility located in the United States.

Chrysler sold 138,019 vehicles in December in the United States, marking its best month since May 2008.

Leading the charge was the Chrysler brand with an 83% hike in monthly sales from a year ago, followed by a 41% increase in Jeep sales; 28% more Dodge sales and a 10% pick up in Ram sales.