Italian auto maker, Fiat used to have quite a presence in Malaysia, with models such as the Punto, Bravo, Multipla and elegant Coupe graced in Malaysia roads. (The Coupe 20v Turbo is still one seriously kick-ass car – Ed.) While Fiat is doing relatively well worldwide, Fiat’s health in Malaysia is best describe as “deteriorating”. Turmoil and frequent changes of distributors have somehow made Fiat a forgotten brand here. However, that is set to change, with recent news that DRB-Hicom, is keen to add Fiat under its belt.
As for now, the executives from Fiat SPA are in talks with DRB-Hicom on exploring the possibility of expanding the Italian marques’ presence in Malaysia. If all goes well, the Turin based company is keen to introduce mass market cars like the iconic Fiat 500 subcompact and the budget oriented Panda supermini. Other possibilities including the handsome Fiat Bravo which can challenge well-established European family hatchbacks like the VW Golf and Peugeot 308.
With DRB-Hicom’s expertise in local assembly and proven success with marques such as Suzuki, VW, Mercedes-Benz and so on, Fiat is really keen to establish and rebuild their presence via DRB-Hicom in Malaysia.
On another separate note, Sime Darby Motors has announced they are letting go of the Alfa Romeo franchise. It was also reported that a few parties are interested in taking over Alfa Romeo. It’s not surprising to see that Naza and DRB-Hicom, have interest in Alfa Romeo, after all the automaker from Milan does belong to the Fiat group. Naza also owns the distributorship of Ferrari and Maserati in Malaysia, which belongs to the Fiat group. We can imagine the exciting business proposition should DRB-Hicom get Fiat.
[SOURCE: The Star]