European media report that Fiat has ended the production of the Punto, 13 years after its introduction in the market. Further, reports confirm that Fiat has no plans to introduce a successor and instead the plant in Melfi, Italy, which made the Punto will be used to manufacture a second Maserati SUV (a Porsche Macan-rivaling mid-size SUV).
In the Indian market, Fiat tried to increase volumes of the Punto family by introducing numerous derivatives including the Avventura, the Urban Cross and Abarth variants, but to no avail. Combined sales of the Punto series products in India for the calendar year 2018 stands at 257 units. Manufacturing of the Punto is in very small volumes by FCA India which is directing energies towards the Jeep brand to increase market share.
In fact, the Fiat nameplate might not have a future in India as products like the Fiat 500, Fiat 500X, Fiat 500L, Fiat Panda, Fiat Qubo, Fiat Doblo and Fiat Fullback global models aren’t sold here. The Fiat Tipo and the Fiat Cronos, which were rumoured to launch in India, with the former in RHD already serving UK and South Africa, appear to be on the backburner.
FCA will instead invest in launching two new Jeep models in India. The first is a sub-4 meter SUV which will rival the Maruti Vitara Brezza, Tata Nexon, Ford EcoSport and the upcoming Mahindra S201. This product will be manufactured with a high degree of localization at the Ranjangaon plant whose capacity will also be increased by 1.5 times to accommodate this product.
Next up, FCA will launch a three-row SUV in India positioned above the Jeep Compass. It is expected to be priced on par with the Ford Endeavour and Toyota Fortuner.