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Discussion Starter #1
http://europe.autonews.com/article/20170814/COPY/308189997/fiat-chrysler-has-chinese-suitors-sources-say?cciid=email-autonews-blast

DETROIT — For more than two years, FCA has been FSBO -- that's For Sale By Owner — with no serious offers. Not anymore.
Representatives of a well-known Chinese automaker made at least one offer this month to buy Fiat Chrysler Automobiles at a small premium over its market value, Automotive News Europe sister publication Automotive News has learned. The offer was rejected for not being enough, a source said.

If Jeep lands in the hands of China that would be a big blow IMO
 
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Volvo, Land Rover, and Jaguar are owned out of Asia and are thriving. Where it's owned doesn't really matter.
Those aren't American brands.
 

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This is agonizing. FCA is near dead. The only parts with some value at FCA are:

1- Jeep
2- RAM
3- Ferrari
4- If you can merge succesfully Maserati and Alfa Romeo in a single commercial channel, Maserati/Alfa Romeo

Chrysler/Dodge is dead since a decade ago... Fiat is so bad that nobody consider it seriously (only their sales in SouthAmerica and Italy keep it with live)

From those brands with some value, one (RAM) will be only for USA. Jeep for USA, SouthAmerica ,Europe and China. Ferrari worldwide and Maserati/Alfa Romeo can be succesfully worldwide if the management put an effort in it.

Some chinese investors can put their money here and have some fun with this ...
 

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Volvo is owned by Geely of China

Land Rover and Jaguar are owned by Tata of India

Ram Trucks would also become a Chinese brand which may not sit well with the truck buying demographic. I also don't think Ford importing Focus back to the US is a good idea either, unless their goal was to limit US sales of Focus, deliberately crippling Focus sales and trying to push consumers into more profitable midsize cars, trucks, CUVs and SUVs made at home, Canada and Mexico. I really think moving Focus production to China is Ford's way of putting one foot out of the US compact car segment.
 

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Volvo is owned by Geely of China

Land Rover and Jaguar are owned by Tata of India

Ram Trucks would also become a Chinese brand which may not sit well with the truck buying demographic. I also don't think Ford importing Focus back to the US is a good idea either, unless their goal was to limit US sales of Focus, deliberately crippling Focus sales and trying to push consumers into more profitable midsize cars, trucks, CUVs and SUVs made at home, Canada and Mexico. I really think moving Focus production to China is Ford's way of putting one foot out of the US compact car segment.
I honestly don't think the majority of Focus owners would know or care.

Truck buyers, however, are a different animal, and I do think RAM sales would be negatively affected.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I honestly don't think the majority of Focus owners would know or care.

Truck buyers, however, are a different animal, and I do think RAM sales would be negatively affected.
Same with Jeep
 
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The deal was rejected, so this is a non-story.
 

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Chinese made vehicles never made it to the US due to Quality and Safety issues, so the idea of Chinese made Focus models coming to the US has a big Quality and Safety perception hurdle to overcome. Consumers may be ok with small electronics being made in China but a big investment like a car is a different story.
 

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Chinese made vehicles never made it to the US due to Quality and Safety issues, so the idea of Chinese made Focus models coming to the US has a big Quality and Safety perception hurdle to overcome. Consumers may be ok with small electronics being made in China but a big investment like a car is a different story.
Uh? Envision?

Those quality issues are related to Chinese-brand vehicles. It'd be different for a Focus.
 
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Land Rover, Jaguar, and Volvo WERE American owned before they were sold. Either way they are still operated out of their native lands in a vastly more effective manner.

As for Focus, what's the difference if it's China or Mexico? I don't think people care, especially in a price sensitive segment like Focus. I do think Ford wants to get out of the volume car business so the consequences are minor for them, especially since they are putting their small car on hiatus and will likely shed a large segment of that customer in the transition (which is happening now anyway).

And if people want to buy the most American made cars, buy Toyota or Nissan. Ford soon will only make trucks and Mustangs in the US and 3/5 of their SUVs.

As for FCA moving to Chinese ownership, anything that saves this company from the brink is a good thing, otherwise it's simply going to cease to exist at all and no American is going to save it. I really believe that FCA is on life support until the next economic downturn. At that point it is either sold or just dissolved into Jeep and RAM.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Land Rover, Jaguar, and Volvo WERE American owned before they were sold. Either way they are still operated out of their native lands in a vastly more effective manner.
JLR and Volvo do not have the same customers that Jeep and RAM do. They are vastly different and the customers who buy Jeep and RAM would most likely not support those brands if they were under Chinese control.
 
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Volvo, Land Rover, and Jaguar are owned out of Asia and are thriving. Where it's owned doesn't really matter.
Those aren't American brands.
:thumb: ...though they WERE :angel sorta 'for one brief shining moment'

This is agonizing. FCA is near dead. The only parts with some value at FCA are:
1- Jeep
2- RAM
3- Ferrari
4- If you can merge succesfully Maserati and Alfa Romeo in a single commercial channel, Maserati/Alfa Romeo...
I thought Ferrari was already sold-off (or split-off/independent or sumthin)

The deal was rejected, so this is a non-story.
so far

Chinese made vehicles never made it to the US due to Quality and Safety issues, so...
Uh? Envision?
also 'flagship' CADILLAC CT6-Hybrid

...the idea of Chinese made Focus models coming to the US has a big Quality and Safety perception hurdle to overcome. Consumers may be ok with small electronics being made in China but a big investment like a car is a different story.
...Those quality issues are related to Chinese-brand vehicles. It'd be different for a Focus.
for some (irrational?) 'reason', imho
a China-Focus would be accepted *IF*
-- sold alongside Euro-built Focii variants (RS,ST, ... SES?)
*and*
-- there was no appreciable quality difference
:angel

- - - - - - -
and cuz I have a grudge against AutomotiveNews' subscription policy:

Fiat Chrysler has Chinese suitors, sources say
Answering Beijing's call for foreign acquisitions

Automotive News Europe
- Larry P. Vellequette - August 14, 2017 - Yang Jian contributed to this report

DETROIT — For more than two years, FCA has been FSBO -- that's For Sale By Owner — with no serious offers.

Not anymore.

Representatives of a well-known Chinese automaker made at least one offer this month to buy Fiat Chrysler Automobiles at a small premium over its market value, Automotive News Europe sister publication Automotive News has learned. The offer was rejected for not being enough, a source said.

Meanwhile, other sources independently identified executives from other large Chinese automakers conducting their own due diligence on a potential purchase of FCA, including meeting last week with representatives of U.S. retail groups about a potential acquisition. A source said FCA executives have traveled to China to meet with Great Wall Motor. And Chinese delegations were seen last week at FCA's headquarters in Auburn Hills, Michigan.

Chinese companies are under government pressure to expand outside China by acquiring foreign companies. FCA may be a perfect target, given that CEO Sergio Marchionne has focused on streamlining the automaker's operations to make it enticing to a buyer, making bold moves such as exiting small cars and sedans and revamping the company's manufacturing footprint.

It's unclear which Chinese automaker or automakers are pursuing FCA. Different sources have pointed to involvement by different ones -- Dongfeng Motor, Great Wall, Zhejiang Geely Holding Group or FCA's current joint venture partner in China, Guangzhou Automobile Group. But it is also unclear which company or companies are likely to follow through or succeed.

FCA isn't talking, nor are any of the four Chinese automakers. But if a sale proceeds, the quintessentially American Jeep brand -- once owned by the Germans and most recently by the Italians/Dutch -- may soon be owned by the Chinese.

According to one source, any sale likely would involve FCA's highly profitable Jeep and Ram brands, as well as Chrysler, Dodge and Fiat, but would exclude Maserati and Alfa Romeo. Those two brands would be spun off, as was Ferrari, to maximize returns for Exor, the holding company controlled by the Agnelli family, which owns a controlling interest in FCA, the source said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

Why, after two years on the block, is FCA apparently drawing interest from at least one potential Chinese buyer now?

The answer: FCA's global network and product -- specifically Jeep and Ram -- fit the requirements the Chinese government has set for attractive acquisitions.

Quality gap
Chinese automakers have openly dreamed of cracking lucrative North America for a decade, spending millions to display their vehicles at high-profile U.S. auto shows. Early efforts showed that Chinese automakers had a long way to go before they were ready to compete here.

But in more recent years -- through knowledge and expertise gained via joint ventures with the world's largest and most successful automakers -- Chinese companies have closed the quality gap.

And the automakers feel like they finally have closed that gap enough to start selling their products in the U.S., said Michael Dunne, president of Dunne Automotive, a Hong Kong investment advisory company and an expert on the Chinese auto industry.

They also are under pressure from the government to expand beyond China, Dunne said.

A government directive dubbed China Outbound pushes Chinese businesses to acquire international assets from their industries and operate them "to make their mark," much as Zhejiang Geely has done since acquiring Volvo in 2010. Bloomberg reported last week that Chinese companies plan to spend $1.5 trillion acquiring overseas companies over the next decade -- a 70 percent increase from current levels.

"Right now, Chinese automakers enjoy the full support of the leadership in Beijing to go and make it happen," Dunne said. "That's something brand new, and it's really picked up since 2015."

Along with Volvo, Dunne pointed to Italian tire maker Pirelli and German robotics giant Kuka as Chinese acquisitions supported by the China Outbound policy.

Interest has been growing for some time. In May 2016, FCA hosted a high-level delegation from China at its North American headquarters, which included Hu Chunhua, a member of the Communist Party's Politburo and secretary of the party's Guangdong Provincial Committee. Also in attendance were Cui Tiankai, China's ambassador to the U.S., and Zhang Fangyou, chairman of Guangzhou Automobile Group.

"The interest is real, no question," Dunne said. "The complications are on the political side: What would this mean for a Chinese company to acquire an American automaker, no matter where its corporate headquarters is based?"

Turnkey operation
For a Chinese automaker that dreams of making a splash in North America, Europe and Latin America, FCA presents as close to a turnkey operation as exists.

Globally, FCA has 162 manufacturing operations -- assembly, component, stamping and machining plants -- and another 87 r&d centers. In North America, FCA has a network of about 2,600 U.S. dealerships, as well as extensive distribution networks in Canada and Mexico.

And unlike other, larger publicly owned automakers with similar global footprints, Marchionne and his bosses at Exor have made one thing clear: Write a big enough check, and the keys to FCA are yours.

When it became apparent in late 2015 that FCA's attempts to merge with General Motors had been rejected and any effort to tie up with Volkswagen was shut down because of that automaker's then-blooming diesel emissions scandal, Marchionne began focusing attention inward, looking at why his company had not been more attractive to potential partners. In early 2016, he began implementing radical changes to make FCA more appealing, especially to an Asian automaker, but also to Volkswagen.

First, FCA shocked the industry by ending production of its compact and midsize sedans in the U.S., the Dodge Dart and Chrysler 200. The cars had been among the first fruits of bankrupt Chrysler's 2009 marriage to Fiat S.p.A., but both had disappointing sales.

At the same time, Marchionne expanded development for his two cash cows, Jeep and Ram. He retooled plants from unibody construction back to body-on-frame to expand production of the Ram 1500 and Jeep Wrangler, and he announced that, after years of consumer clamoring, Jeep would again build a pickup and would soon build big luxury Jeeps to compete with Land Rover.

Product development plans laid out in 2014 -- to vastly expand the Chrysler lineup, for example -- were scrapped. FCA's North American product line would go where the money was: pickups, SUVs and the minivan.

Stretch goals
The transformation, which will be largely complete by 2018, will mean FCA showrooms will resemble those of a decade ago when gasoline prices spiked: full of SUVs, crossovers, minivans and pickups and devoid of anything smaller or more fuel-efficient. The transformation has helped FCA's quarterly financials, and Marchionne says the automaker is on track to achieve in 2018 what had been widely considered pie-in-the-sky goals laid out in 2014.

FCA has also looked hard at shedding holdings not directly related to automaking as a way to free trapped value for shareholders. That could include separation from parts maker Magneti Marelli, casting specialist Teksid and automation provider Comau.

On a conference call with analysts last month, Marchionne laid out the strategy.

"In order to be fair to our shareholders, we need to make sure that we deliver as much value out of this venture as we can," he said.

The prospect of selling FCA to a Chinese automaker has been on Marchionne's mind for awhile. In August 2015, months after he began his quest to merge or partner with another global automaker with his "Confessions of a Capital Junkie" presentation, and while he was launching his soon-to-be-rebuffed bid to merge with GM, the FCA CEO told Automotive News that he had closely studied potential tie-ups with numerous Asian automakers.

His conclusion: None of the Asian automakers was looking for partners.

He was asked: Anyone in Asia?

"I don't think Asia is partner-able," he said. "No, you can be acquired by the Asians. I think China will buy you."

.
 

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FCA has suffered under Marchione's heavy hand. Chinese ownership couldn't be any worse.

An infusion of real capital could remake the Jeep and Ram brand which will continue to be engineered and made in the USA for a whole host of reasons. The Volvo and Jaguar resurgence is due to their management's freedom to invest in R&D; freedom given to them by their Asian investors and freedom which was not given to them by Ford.

Volvo's DNA is still Swedish and Jaguar's is still British. Don't sign Jeep & Ram's death certificate if a deal is made in the future. If you do, you might be in for a big surprise.
 

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FCA has suffered under Marchione's heavy hand. Chinese ownership couldn't be any worse.

An infusion of real capital could remake the Jeep and Ram brand which will continue to be engineered and made in the USA for a whole host of reasons. The Volvo and Jaguar resurgence is due to their management's freedom to invest in R&D; freedom given to them by their Asian investors and freedom which was not given to them by Ford.

Volvo's DNA is still Swedish and Jaguar's is still British. Don't sign Jeep & Ram's death certificate if a deal is made in the future. If you do, you might be in for a big surprise.
Jeep is the only brand (aside from Alfa) that FCA has put money into.
 

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Fiat Chrysler may be very close to breaking itself up
Yahoo
-[Business Insider] - Matthew DeBord - August 14, 2017


Automotive News reported on Monday that Fiat Chrysler Automobiles rebuffed a buyout offer from a Chinese carmaker.

FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne has been trying to merge the company with another automaker for years, so the news wasn't exactly earth-shattering, and Automotive News couldn't pin down which Chinese company made the bid.

But it's pretty clear that Marchionne's game plan before he retires in 2019 is to complete an arc for FCA that began in 2009, when Fiat took the bankrupt Chrysler off the US federal government's hands.

Marchionne has already spun off Ferrari in what has turned out to be a highly profitable initial public offering in 2015 — Ferrari is currently the best-performing stock in the auto sector, up 87% year to date. (That's better than even Tesla.)

On earnings calls, he has hinted that a combined Maserati-Alfa Romeo could be next — or Jeep, the crown jewel in the old Chrysler brand and a division that has been raking in the profits for FCA amid an SUV boom in the US.

Here's Automotive News:
"According to one source, any sale likely would involve FCA's highly profitable Jeep and Ram brands, as well as Chrysler, Dodge, and Fiat, but would exclude Maserati and Alfa Romeo. Those two brands would be spun off, as was Ferrari, to maximize returns for Exor, the holding company controlled by the Agnelli family, which owns a controlling interest in FCA, the source said, speaking on condition of anonymity."
For all practical purposes, Marchionne wants to maximize value for the Agnellis — Gianni Agnelli made Fiat into an Italian industrial colossus after World War II — and his guiding idea is that FCA's brands are worth more than the company as a whole. For example, Ferrari now has a market capitalization of $20 billion, more than FCA's $18 billion.

Jeep could be worth far more than that.

Marchionne's success with the Ferrari IPO could be influencing his thinking. He unsuccessfully lobbied for General Motors to merge with FCA in 2016, but that was before Ferrari shares took off in 2017. Marchionne also might have thought the Trump administration would assist in pressuring the Detroit rivals to combine forces, an outcome that doesn't appear to be on the agenda.

So spinning off brands might now be his favored play. If that's the case, then Maserati-Alfa would probably be next, with Jeep-Ram to follow.

FCA shares surged in Monday trading, up over 7%, to $12.50.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
FCA has suffered under Marchione's heavy hand. Chinese ownership couldn't be any worse.

An infusion of real capital could remake the Jeep and Ram brand which will continue to be engineered and made in the USA for a whole host of reasons. The Volvo and Jaguar resurgence is due to their management's freedom to invest in R&D; freedom given to them by their Asian investors and freedom which was not given to them by Ford.

Volvo's DNA is still Swedish and Jaguar's is still British. Don't sign Jeep & Ram's death certificate if a deal is made in the future. If you do, you might be in for a big surprise.
That's all well and good but the truck market is literally bragging rights and it doesn't sound so good to those buyers when your truck is owned by a Chinese company no matter where it's built.
 

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