DETROIT - A merger between FCA and France-owned Group PSA would create the world's fourth-largest automaker in terms of sales. The move would put Fiat Chrysler in a good position to tackle a growing global market. Since its footing in North America already amounts to two-thirds of the company's profits, what would it mean for Peugeot?
"Whether we merge with someone else or not, it's in our road map. Actually on (the) Europe side we're launching our first full range of five-battery electric cars next year. Then we've got battery versions that we already had Fiat 500 here in the U.S., but bringing some of those here," said Mark Stewart, FCA COO.
FCA has been eyeing what their future would look like for a while. After announcements, it would be investing $1.6 billion in plants at the Mack Avenue Engine complex, the future assembly site for the next-generation Jeep Grand Cherokees is expected to also include plug-in hybrid models.
"A huge part of why the merger made sense for them is the value in the Jeep brand. They assure me they're going full speed ahead with the plans to build more Grand Cherokees, and they'll be starting the hiring almost imminently for that plant that's going to open in a year," said Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan.
Duggan says they've qualified 3,500 Detroiters who have passed the math and reasoning test, and are now being interviewed by FCA for the first 2,000 jobs they're hiring for.
"We are really optimistic that we are going to have a huge percentage of folks from the city working in the plant right there in the community that they're by," Stewart said.
There were also discussions about boosting black suppliers, dealers and professionals in the hiring process.
"We're competing with inheritance, not just an even playing field," said Rev. Jesse Jackson.
The merger is a 50-50 split between the two companies and expected to same about $4 billion a year, so far without closing any factories.