Fiat's Mirafiori plant in Turin will produce Alfa Romeo and Jeep models for global distribution as part of a new joint-venture company formed by Fiat S.p.A. and Chrysler Group.
To retool the factory, Fiat-Chrysler will invest over 1 billion euros (in excess of $1.3 billion). Fiat expects to spend up to 20 billion euros through 2014 to improve factories and vehicle development in its domestic market in return for union concessions on work regulations.
The plant will build the mid-sized Giulia sedan and station wagon, which will replace Alfa's 159 range.
It will also produce the medium SUVs for the Alfa and Jeep brands. A Fiat spokesman said that the Alfa SUV will compete with the Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Mercedes-Benz GLK. The Jeep model is expected to replace the Compass/Patriot model.
Fiat revealed that production will begin in the third or fourth quarter of 2012, and that half of the production will be sold in Europe while the other half will be exported mainly to North America.
The Alfa models play a vital role in the brand's relaunch in North America. With these new models, the plant's production is expected to increase from 250,000 to 280,000 units annually. In 2009, the Mirafiori plant had rolled out 178,500 cars. [via autonews - sub. required]