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Business

Fiat: "We Plan to Do Better this Year"

Italian carmaker Fiat, which also owns the Alfa Romeo and Lancia marques, plans to boost sales in Germany following a return to profitability last year in its German operations.

Woman standing beside a compact car model and an oversized car display

The new Fiat 500 is driving profits

"We plan to do better this year than in 2007," Fiat Germany head Manfred Kantner said in an interview with motoring magazine Automobilwoche published Tuesday.

After incurring a loss in 2006, the Italian carmaker achieved profits of 15.3 million euros (23.7 million dollars) in its German operation last year.

Kantner predicted the company would sell more than 130,000 cars and trucks this year, with the new Fiat 500 compact contributing 15,000 units, up from 2,200 last year following its launch.

Increased turnover

According to the report, Fiat Germany increased turnover last year by 7.4 percent to 1.7 billion euros, with a particularly strong showing from commercial vehicles, while car deliveries to dealers declined.

Fiat Germany suffered operating losses of 12.2 million euros in 2005 and 8.6 million in 2006.

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