Instead, the SUV push will continue.
Sergio Marchionne, Fiat Chrysler Automobile boss, is giving up on his idea of a merger with another automaker. During an investors’ meeting in Amsterdam last week, Reuters reports, he announced the manufacturer is currently not in a position to seek possible deals and will instead continue to follow its own business plan.
Marchionne, who will leave the company in early 2019 after 15 years on the helm, has been in search for a merger partner in the last couple of years. He sees tie-ups as the best solution to reduce development and manufacturing costs, but confirmed FCA is currently not in talks with Volkswagen Group.
"On the Volkswagen issue, on the question if there are ongoing discussions, the answer is no," Marchionne clearly declared in Amsterdam. "The primary focus is the execution of the plan.”
Last month Marchionne commented that Volkswagen could be interested in a major deal with FCA following PSA’s acquisition of Opel and Vauxhall from General Motors. The information was initially denied by the German company, but CEO Matthias Mueller then commented the Group is now more open to deals and invited Marchionne on a discussion.
In Amsterdam, John Elkann, Chairman at FCA, confirmed that finding a merger partner was not a high priority for the automaker in the last months.
"I'm not interested in a big merger deal," he said. "Historically, deals are struck at times of difficulty ... we don't want to be in trouble. I believe the priority for FCA is to press ahead with this ambitious (business) plan despite the difficult environment.”
Late last year it was reported that Fiat Chrysler could consider selling two of its most reputable brands, Alfa Romeo and Maserati, in order to cover its nearly $7-billion debt as of Q3 of 2016. No official denial has been released so far.