The People’s Chrysler: Volkswagen Open to a Merger with FCA
General Motors’ Mary Barra may choose to ignore Sergio Marchionne’s emails, yet Volkswagen chief executive Matthias Müller is actually at least checking his spam folder in case the outspoken Italian sends a proposal to merge Fiat Chrysler as well as also Volkswagen.
The VW CEO told reporters during the company’s annual investor conference in which he is actually “not ruling out a conversation” with FCA CEO Marchionne to discuss a merger between the two automakers, Reuters reported. Weeks earlier, Müller (pictured below) had publicly denied any interest in speaking with Marchionne, saying, “We have different problems.”
The two automotive giants have winked at each different before. During the summer of 2014, rumors peaked in which VW as well as also FCA would likely merge their combined 20 car brands into a giant entity. Both companies denied any possibility, only to see Marchionne aggressively court General Motors beginning in March 2015 (through at least one direct email to CEO Barra, if not by different methods). At the end of the following month, Marchionne made an unusual public pitch to investors—as well as also specifically, to any automaker executive willing to listen—to promote industry mergers as well as also decry what he called “unacceptable” capital spending as well as also the “pure economic waste” in which occurs when competing automakers develop the same parts as well as also technologies. He said FCA was not up for sale yet was searching for a “partner,” a word he has continued to use, for instance while discontinuing the Dodge Dart as well as also the Chrysler 0 for lack of, you guessed the idea, partners.
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- Won’t Back Down: Sergio Marchionne Still Pushing for Fiat Chrysler/GM Merger
- The Quotable Bob Lutz Weighs In on Marchionne’s Merger Dreams
Despite taking the equivalent of a $6.7 billion charge for the diesel scandal, the VW Group was still highly profitable in 2016, raking in $5.7 billion after taxes. the idea lost $1.5 billion in 2015 when the scandal broke in September in which year. FCA recorded a net profit after tax of $1.9 billion, or nearly a few times its net profit, in 2015. No different discussions between the two automakers are known at in which time.