The ambition – if we look closely at the litmus test on the outcome of the merger over the next few years – is to attack the Chinese market. Stellantis’ categorical imperative is to grow in the main market in the world, the one further ahead on the transition to electricity, where it plans to “control the entire value chain by 2025”. Commenting on the latest figures from Fiat-Chrysler and PSA, relating to the last pre-merger year, the CEO Carlos Tavares moves the presentation of the industrial plan further “to the end of 2021, the beginning of 2022”. In watermark it will be a year of transition.
There is an immense work to be done to make a common factor, especially on industrial synergies and vehicle production platforms, to reach the target of 5 billion in savings. In order not to affect the item “work” – and the Italian plants are among the main suspects in the Stellantis galaxy for a lower productivity per employee – it is necessary to grow on values and volumes in a steep market, with less than 28% of registrations found in 2020. The goal is to focus on premium brands, which have higher margins. To do this, you will have to bet on the most iconic ones.
In Italy the Cassino plant runs on a narrow gauge, at 10% of production capacity and only at the end of the year will production of the Maserati Grecale begin. Among the premium brands there are Alfa Romeo – to be relaunched and therefore useful to save Cassino – Ds and Lancia. An ambitious challenge that will also be played on component procurement policies in which the lion’s share will inevitably go to the French subsidiary Faurecia, which serves all the big names in the car, and also gives value to former FCA shareholders, therefore also to Exor , holding company of the Agnelli, subject of the merger agreement. “Too early to talk about the dividend policy,” replies Tavares on the remuneration of shareholders. For now, rewarded with a billion dollar dividend. In 2020, FCA recorded revenues of 86 billion, PSA for 60 billion.