Fiat is trying to make sure India notices it, bigger and better, and they have applied the next gear in the attempt.
After introducing India to their racing genes with the Abarth 595 Competizione, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has launched two more performance oriented products - premium hot hatchback Punto Abarth and crossover Avventura powered by Abarth - priced at Rs 9.95 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi).
“All these are part of the jigsaw that we are putting together. We are understanding what is needed for Fiat to be great again in India,” Fiat Chrysler Automobiles India president and managing director Kevin Flynn said.
He said the Abarth Punto is designed indigenously and is a “homegrown, home engineered” product that is targeted at racing enthusiasts. The Abarth Punto, powered by a 1.4 litre petrol engine, delivers power of 145 hp.
Flynn said the company is also widening and strengthening its product portfolio with the introduction of Avventura powered by Abarth, also powered by a 1.4 litre petrol engine with a power of 140 hp.
“We are confident that these two new category defining models from Fiat stable would catch the fancy of car enthusiasts and perk up sales during the festive season,” Flynn added.
Stating that India forms a “massive part” of the company’s plans, he said, “we are really determined to bring more upmarket products here.”
Earlier in August, the Italian-American auto major launched its premium sports hatchback Abarth 595 Competizione priced at Rs 29.85 lakh.
In July, Fiat Chrysler announced it would invest $280 million (over Rs 1,780 crore) in its manufacturing joint venture with Tata Motors to support production of Jeep model which is expected to roll out in the second quarter of 2017.
Jeep branded vehicles are currently manufactured in Italy and Brazil, and the company will begin production in China in the fourth quarter of 2015. The fourth plant outside US for volume production of Jeep vehicles will be in Ranjangaon, Maharashtra,
At present, Fiat has a capacity to produce 1.35 lakh cars per annum from the plant. In 2014, Fiat Chrysler had announced plans to launch 12 models in India in five years.