Fiat has named Alfredo Altavilla as the chief executive of the carmaker’s operations in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA), effective immediately. He will be replacing the retiring Gianni Coda, who has served 33 years at Fiat. Altavilla will leave his position as chief executive of Fiat's truck-making unit, Iveco.
However, he will continue to coordinate the business development activities for Fiat Group. As new CEO of EMEA, Altavilla serves as a key aide to Fiat chief executive Sergio Marchionne. Altavilla and Marchionne are the only Fiat executives sitting on the board of Chrysler Group. Marchionne expressed gratitude to Coda’s long service with Fiat, which included eight years as the Italian carmaker’s head of Group Purchasing.
Coda joined Fiat Group in 1979, rising to become head of the carmaker’s Latin America and the Fiat-Lancia business units. He was named as head of Group Purchasing in 2004. Altavilla joined Fiat in 1990 and has served as chief of the carmaker’s China, Turkey and powertrain operations. He was credited for developing partnerships between Fiat and other carmakers like General Motors and PSA/Peugeot-Citroen from 2000 to 2004.
He also played a leading role in Fiat's acquisition of Chrysler in 2008-2009. Fiat likewise implemented other management changes, including the appointment of Richard Tobin as chief operating officer of Fiat Industrial Group, to facilitate the merger of Iveco with CNH, the carmaker’s agricultural equipment maker. Tobin will remain as chief executive of CNH.