Thursday, 4 August 2011

Marchionne says he'll likely step aside from Chrysler in 2015 or 2016




Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne today hinted that he will be stepping aside from the helm of the U.S. automaker within five years.
During a question-and-answer session at the 2011 Management Briefing Seminars, the 59-year-old executive said Chrysler's future plans "will be up to the guy after me -- after 2015 or maybe a year later…. There will be a Chrysler after me."
Marchionne currently is CEO of both Chrysler and its controlling shareholder, Fiat S.p.A. Over the last few weeks, he has begun integrating the management teams of the two companies while retaining oversight of North America.
Earlier today, Marchionne said Chrysler should have little trouble reaching tough new fuel-economy requirements for 2025.


Speaking here during a live radio program, Marchionne also said he expected smooth contract negotiations with the UAW.
"If anybody starts any type of confrontational process, we're going to undo everything," he said.
Dressed in a black golf shirt instead of his trademark sweater, Marchionne said the auto industry has the engineers and suppliers to meet U.S. mileage regulations calling for 54.5 mpg by 2025. He called the challenge "very doable."
Marchionne gave as an example the fuel-economy gains made by the new Chrysler 300 full-size sedan, which has been rated 31 mpg on the highway. He said that though that is a far-cry from an average city and highway rating of 54.5 mpg, the industry still has 14 years to tap current and future technology to reach the standards.
He said he was optimistic that the industry would hit annual sales in 2011 of 12.7 million units. Marchionne said parts suppliers have geared up to meet the volumes after weathering the deep auto recession of two years ago.
Asked by Detroit radio host Paul W. Smith of WJR-760 AM if President Obama wanted only electric cars on the road, Marchionne said the president "wants our cars to be efficient."
Marchionne said he drives a Dodge Charger SRT8 as his every day ride – "black on black."
The radio host joked, "like your sweater."





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