New boss appointed at Vauxhall, the British brand of Stellantis

Andrew Cummings
January 21, 2021

Stellantis, the carmaker forged from the merger of Fiat Chrysler and Peugeot-owner PSA, will give all its 14 brands a chance at success and keep all options on the table for revitalising its struggling Chinese business, its top executive said on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, referring to an out-and-out optimism over a PSA-FCA merger deal aimed at slashing down the carmaker's expenses amid a pandemic-hit global passenger auto market, Stellantis Chair John Elkann said in a video during Borsa Italian opening, "We have the scale, the resources, the diversity and the knowhow to successfully capture the opportunities of this new era in transportation, " Besides, adding that the merger deal in effect would augment almost €25 billion in valuations for common shareholders over the coming years, Stellantis Chief Executive, Tavares said, "I can tell you that the focus from day one will be on the value creation that is the result of the implementation of those synergies".

Tavares told reporters he had created a task force to find out "what went wrong" for both Fiat Chrysler (FCA) and PSA in China.

Explaining his thinking, Tavares said that the Government ban would mean the Group would not be investing in internal combustion technology for the United Kingdom, but that investments in alternative electric vehicles will be better placed near the largest markets, which are in Europe.

Ahead of the merger, PSA and FCA pledged not to close plants and Tavares said Stellantis' ability to spread costs to invest in new vehicles would be a "shield" against job cuts.

He said the firm is "reviewing those different scenarios" and expects to make a decision about the Ellesmere Port plant "within a few weeks".

At his first news conference since the creation of Stellantis on January 16, Tavares repeated a promise not to close factories as a result of the merger.

Stellantis, forged from the merger of Peugeot and Fiat's parent companies, owns the Opel brand, which trades as Vauxhall in Britain, and makes the Astra auto at its Northern English factory and the Vivaro van at a southern English site in Luton.

"It will take time, but we can do so as we are able to work on a plurality of choices", he said.

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