The national media have been heavily reporting about the production of a new model at the FCA in Kragujevac. Although there may be some truth to that, the fact is that this is unverified information which, according to the employees of Fiat’s plant in Kragujevac, further annoys the already troubled and frightened workers who, due to a lack of work, are sent to paid leave.
According to the latest information, the production of the Fiat 500 Giardiniera model will begin in Kragujevac by 2021 and will replace the 500L in the market. Referring to the specialized website clubalfa.it, the Italian media report that Fiat will focus strongly on the 500 family in the future.
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The classic version of the model should still dominate in class A, while the Giardiniera, which according to anonymous sources from the Italian website, will probably be produced in Serbia and will be moved to the segment C. The Giardiniera should also have an electric version. However, the FIAT Group has not yet confirmed this news.
Two weeks ago, the media reported, while referring to the alleged statement by the head of the global brand Olivier François and also reported by clubalfa.it, that it the production of an SUV (Fiat’s version of Jeep Compass) would begin in Kragujevac by 2021. According to these reports, the production of the current 500L model in Kragujevac would not be interrupted.
On the contrary, in the near future, the production of the light hybrid version would start with the new SUV C-Class. In early August, there was also a media report about the production of a new class “B” SUV starting in 2020 or 2021.
In addition to the inaccuracies linked to the destiny of the Fiat 500L, the Serbian media have interpreted the announcements published on Italian websites regarding the production of a new vehicle in the Kragujevac factory. Some say that the new model, announced by François fifteen days ago, was actually the Fiat version of the Jeep Compass, while others say that Fiat’s CEO was referring the Giardiniera. Of course, nobody’s clear on what Olivier François really meant, since no media has cited his alleged statement on the new model being produced in Kragujevac. The media reports are based on mere gossip and their credibility should be thoroughly checked.
It is expected that the management of the FCA will announce its intentions by the year-end and that the Serbian government will clarify to the workers of Kragujevac and the media the investment plan for Serbia, which should include information about the new model. This plan was supposed to be revealed in late 2018, then at the beginning of this year and finally by the end of April, but for unknown reasons, this has yet to happen.
Fiat Kragujevac’s trade union does not even want to comment on the announcement of the new model as they do not have reliable information about it. However, they believe that it is unfair to scare workers who are already nervous and alarmed by giving news that has not been verified.
This post is also available in: Italiano