Seven years ago, Chinese automaker Guangzhou Automobile Group (GAC) entered into a joint venture Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. Currently, the joint venture locally builds the Cherokee, Compass, and Renegade. The venture also imports the Grand Cherokee and Wrangler for Chinese buyers. It has proven to be successful as the venture saw its sales triple to nearly 150,000 vehicles in 2016. Because of this, GAC wants to strengthen their ties with FCA.
"GAC has a real interest in deepening relations with Fiat Chrysler to expand outside China, especially in the U.S. Fiat hasn’t been able so far to catch up with competitors in China, so there is much room to improve," said Vincenzo Longo, a strategist at IG Markets in Milan.
In an interview with Bloomberg, GAC President Feng Xingya said the two automakers are in discussions about deepening their partnership. The key items being focused in the discussions include models, production, and sales targets. Xingya also hinted that GAC wanted to work FCA in the U.S. when it plans to launch their unfortunately named Trumpchi brand by 2019.
“We are very satisfied with our cooperation with FCA. We have yet to reach a conclusion on how to cooperate with FCA when we begin manufacturing in the U.S., and we have also not begun discussions with other Chinese automakers on whether to make cars together in the U.S,” said Xingya.