On Tuesday, we ran a story based on a report by Bloomberg News that Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne has been talking to PSA Peugeot Citroen and Opel executives about the three carmakers merging into a single entity. Today, however, Marchionne refuted the report describing it to Automotive Europe as “bizarre”.
The Fiat-Chrysler CEO admitted that he had been talking with GM and PSA CEOs Dan Akerson and Philippe Varin, respectively, but he stressed that the discussions were misinterpreted by the report.
“We discuss a variety of things when we chat, which is not a very frequent event”, Marchionne told the news site. “Fiat’s condition in Europe has been discussed. I’m sure that there were comments that were made about Opel from time to time and I’ve discussed trading conditions with Philippe (Varin) from time to time”, he added.
“We’re all dismayed at the level of depressed pricing that we’re seeing in Europe. I think that’s a collective or a shared view, so there’s nothing unusual about that”, said Marchionne.
“What’s unusual in my view is that the story will break out about a potential transaction involving us and PSA and Opel. I mean it’s bizarre”.
If Fiat, Peugeot and Opel combined forces in a single entity, then they would be able to deal with the crisis in a much more effective way and at the same time, create a new group that would leapfrog even VW in market share in Europe.
Bloomberg reported that its sources said Peugeot didn’t favor Marchionne’s plan as it wanted to concentrate on its restructuring and its new alliance with GM.
By Andrew Tsaousis