WASHINGTON/MILAN (CI GCA) – (Update on September 25 2017 to add comments by South Korea Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-Wha and US House Ways and Means Committee Ranking Member Sander Levin (D-Michigan) — Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (NYSE:FCAU) CEO Sergio Marchionne is now setting his sights on a merger with South Korea’s automotive giant The Hyundai Motor Group while at the same time using China’s Great Wall Motor Co as a stalking horse, sources close to the situation said.
[Fiat Chrysler Automobiles FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne speaks to Capitol Intelligence/CI GCA using CI Glass at the Brookings Institution in Washington, DC.]
It is understood that FCA CEO Marchionne began planting rumors of possible Chinese interest in FCA in June after being rebuffed first by General Motors (NYSE:GM) CEO Mary T. Barra and later by troubled Wolfsburg, Germany-based Volkwagen Group (ETR:VOW3).
Jim Trainor, a Hyundai spokesman in the United States, said the company does not comment on market rumors. HMG, world’s fifth largest automotive manufacturer, owns the Hyundai and KIA automotive brands that operates US manufacturing plants in Montgomery, Alabama (Hyundai Santa Fe,, Sonata and Elantra and KIA (Santa Fe, Sorento) in West Point, Georgia.