As a leading global motor company, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles could no longer afford to remain a peripheral player in the South African new-vehicle market, new local CEO Robin van Rensburg said on Thursday. Van Rensburg, who took charge this month, said with the exception of Jeep, the company’s brands were underachievers in SA. With two of these brands likely to quietly leave the country in coming weeks, those remaining had to significantly improve their market share. He predicted the arrival of new products would kick-start this recovery. Fiat was an important brand in the 1990s when the little Uno transformed the entry-level car market. In those days, Fiat sold cars in SA by the thousand. Now it does so by the dozen; all that is available is the Fiat 500 range. The sporty Alfa Romeo and Abarth brands also sell slowly. On the Chrysler side of the business, the Chrysler and Dodge car brands are on the verge of discreetly quitting SA, once current stocks are exhausted. Neither has mad...

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