Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) is among the few automakers that incurred losses in the European region so far that now believes it could turn around and break even this year.
General Motors and Ford slowly but certainly backtracked on their previous assessments that called for their own European units to end years of losses in the region in 2015, putting the forecast on 2016. But Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA), with its newfound focus on luxury vehicles built in Europe and exported to overseas markets such as the US or China is paying off and seems to be confident it can break even at an operating level ahead of schedule. The European region tumbled during a six-year sales slump that led to two decade-lows and the road to recovery has been filled with potholes last year. “In 2015, we could break even at the operating level (in Europe),” commented FCA’s CEO Sergio Marchionne on the sidelines of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit this week.
With FCA increasingly dependant on its US division for profit, as the company has seen numerous woes in other regions – including Latin America – the automaker previously said its European operations would end losses in 2016 – after in 2013 they had an operating loss of 520 million euros ($613 million). Additionally, back at home in Italy, FCA said it wants to hire more than 1,000 new workers at its Melfi factory due to “extremely positive” demand for the newly introduced Jeep Renegade and Fiat 500X models – as the plant now reaches full production capacity. Additionally, in another sign of things to come, the facility that was upgraded with a more than one billion euro investment recalled at work its temporary layoffs – with 5,418 employees coming back to work full-time.