26. May 2017

Fiat presents its restyled 500L model at Serbian plant

Fiat accounts for three percent Serbia's GDP and nearly eight percent of its exports, Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic said on Thursday. At the unveiling of the new Fiat 500L car at the FCA Serbia plant in Kragujevac, central Serbia, he said it was "our small Serbian car that we are producing in our Kragujevac." After driving the restyled 500L to the gate of the factory, Vucic "expressed gratitude to the workers who by producing Fiat cars in Serbia make their families proud, but also the whole country," the government said. He "pointed out that the Serbian government will continue to fight for the export of Fiat on the Russian market, adding that two rounds of technical negotiations have been completed so far." "We will try to make contracts with governments of other countries too on the export of Fiat as this will make the position of Kragujevac workers easier and guarantee the success of production," Vucic said, and told Fiat leadership that they can "always count on the broadest support possible from the Serbian government for their future investments, both through incentives and subsidies, and in every other way." "I am sure that the agreement with Fiat will be extended after its expiry on December 31, 2018, Vucic said, announcing that the government "will work hard to achieve that." Executive Director Fiat-Chrysler Group (FCA) Alfredo Altavilla said that new Fiat 500L is the successor of the best-selling small multi-purpose vehicle in Europe and it is destined to be renewed and its success continued. The new model is said to be safer, more practical and technologically better; 40 percent of its parts have been changed. Sales are scheduled to begin in July. The FCA Serbia company was founded in 2008 and is majority owned by the Italian Fiat, which holds 67 percent of its shares, while the Serbian government holds a 33 percent stake. The new FCA factory in Kragujevac opened in April 2012 and over EUR 1.3bn has been invested in it since then, of which EUR 850 million in equipment, Beta reported. The FCA exported around EUR 1.1 billion worth of automobiles in 2016 and is the largest exporter in Serbia. @b92

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