Fiat cuts annual sales target in China by 83%

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Shanghai, October 30, 2008: ( Italian carmaker Fiat has lowered its ambitious annual sales target by 2010 in China to 50,000 units from 300,000 set three years ago, down by 83%, Beijing Times said today, citing Fiat China.

"Fiat's target to sell 300,000 cars a year in China by 2010 is now unreachable because of the global financial crisis, "Fiat Group Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne was quoted as saying. Fiat China confirmed that the company has adjusted its annual sales target in China to 50,000 units by 2010, which led to vagueness of the auto giant's joint venture plan in 2010.

"It possibly means the prospect of Fiat joint venture talks is unclear in China," an industry insider said.

Fiat had previously planned to invest 500 million euros in its joint venture over five years in a drive toward meeting the company's 2010 sales goal of 300,000 vehicles in China.

After terminating its partnership with Nanjing Automobile Corp. (NAC), Fiat plans to re-enter China through imported cars, and is having joint venture talks with Chery, a process which is rather slow and dim. The disturbances pushed Fiat to change its previous target, but the sharp cut rate staggers everyone.

The Italian auto giant hopes to walk out the adjusting period in 2010 and launch new programs in China, but the forecast annual sales of 50,000 units will likely discredit its joint venture plan.

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