It was reported this week that Fiat S.p.A. is carrying out environmental and safety evaluations of Chrysler LLC factors as part of its intention to take over 35 percent of its stake.
Environ Holdings Inc., of Arlington, Virginia was hired by Fiat to conduct the evaluations. The aim of the teams sent to Chrysler plants was to determine whether the investment would put Fiat at a disadvantage on issues relating to the environment or safety.
The intended partnership, which was made public in January, is seen by Chrysler top brass as the route of choice to its survival.
Chrysler, which has already received $4 billion in aid from the US government for it to stay in business and is seeking an additional $5 billion more, will receive access to Fiat powerplant lineups, transmissions and small-car platforms to enable it to meet stringent US fuel-economy regulations.
The collaboration would also enable Chrysler to go slow on its dependence on gas-guzzling light trucks, and at the same time Fiat would be put in a position to sell its models via Chrysler's wide network of US dealerships.
Nothing is final as of this time, but it seems that the alliance is dependent on Chrysler receiving the second $5 billion loan from the government to enable it to continue its operations.
In the past four months, Chrysler's sales in the US have dropped in excess of 40 percent, year to year.