Fiat’s plant in Serbia expects to deliver between 110,000 and 150,000 Fiat 500L vehicles to the US this year.
Antonio Cesare Ferrara, head of Fiat Automobili Srbija, said that from September to February the automaker took more than 40,000 orders for the variants of the 500L model, surpassing the target. The Italian company will continue to make investments in its JV with the Serbian government and add more than 600 new jobs to the 2,500 existing ones. Until now Fiat spent 1 billion euro to expand and upgrade the facility which once manufactured the Yugo vehicles.
“We’re a little bit above the target,” Ferrara told reporters in Belgrade.
In November Fiat introduced the 500L model in Europe as a replacement for the Idea small minivan. The model will be introduced in the US in June, as well as the 500L Trekking crossover version and the 500XL seven-seat option in April and May. The Kragujevac plant sends cars mainly to western Europe and soon might get customs-free access to Russia if Serbia convinces the country to expand their free-trade deal to include vehicles.
“Production will grow if we are able to sell this car in Russia” without customs, Ferrara said.