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Fiat says it made 'courageous' choices in hard year

Automaker says decisions in 2013 will help company in future

20 December, 12:35
Fiat says it made 'courageous' choices in hard year (ANSA) - Turin, December 20 - In a "very difficult year" for the automobile market, Fiat has taken some "bold decisions" that will set the company up for better times ahead, management of the automaker said Friday.

"Instead of closing some systems, we have chosen to focus on the top of the market, the full potential of our brands, and numerous benefits that we derive from the alliance with Chrysler," Fiat President John Elkann and Sergio Marchionne, chief executive officer, said in a letter to staff. "We have initiated a series of investments that will continue in the months and years to come,""they said, adding that "very positive" signs were already coming from the company's Maserati plant.

"The new year promises to be full of challenges. We know that the market will continue to be difficult, but we believe we can achieve the goals we set ourselves," they concluded.

The Fiat Group on September 4 announced a deal with unions to invest just under one billion euros to retool the loss-making Mirafiori plant to produce a Maserati SUV and another unnamed model there.

The plans are part of Fiat's strategy to focus Italian manufacturing on premium cars.