Fiat-Chrysler is planning to invest $280 million to start the production of Jeep models in India from 2017, through an expanded joint venture with Tata Motors. Sergio Marchionne, Chief Executive at Fiat-Chrysler said that he is pursuing ambitious sales targets for the brand. By 2018, the automaker wants to double the sales of Jeep models.
Mike Manley, Jeep Chief stated that local production for some of the most significant markets is key to meeting that goal. In addition to Alfa Romeo, Jeep is at the heart of Sergio’s $54 billion expansion plan by merging Fiat with Chrysler. The Chief Executive Officer also revealed the first of 8 new Alfa Romeo models with which he is planning to challenge giant German automakers – Mercedes Benz, Audi and BMW.
One of the rapidly growing segments globally, sports utility vehicles already account for around 1/5th of India’s 2.6 million annual passenger vehicle sales. Automakers including General Motors and Volkswagen are planning to introduce sports utility vehicles in the country to compete with Toyota. The company hasn’t disclosed their production plans yet, but Manley stated that Jeep would be making its Indian sales debut this year with rugged Jeep Wrangler and midsized Cherokee.