Fiat has revealed plans to build up to 280,000 Jeep and Alfa Romeo compact SUVs per year from 2012.
The cars will be built at Fiat’s Mirafiori plant in Turin after the firm agreed to invest 1.3 billion euros in re-tooling in preparation for production of the two cars in the third quarter of 2012.
Both the new Alfa and Jeep SUVs will be built on Fiat’s Compact Wide architecture that was first seen on the Alfa Giulietta. The Jeep model will replace both the Compass and Patriot, while the Alfa will line up next to the Audi Q5 and BMW X3.
Confirming the news, Fiat boss Sergio Marchionne said that styling of both new models had been well received in recent customer clinics.
Jeep will take around 150,000 units of the 280,000 annual production, with Alfa taking a minimum of 100,000 units. Half the models will be exported to the US – the Alfa SUV is crucial to the firm’s US relaunch – and the other half will remain in Europe.
Mirafiori has seen its annual output decline by around 100,000 units in four years to 120,000 units in 2010. The plant currently builds the Alfa Mito, Fiat Idea and Lancia Musa.