However, while the Nissan will take the next-gen Triton as its base, it is not known at this juncture if the Italian carmaker’s first ladder-frame pickup will be based on that, or the current Triton, which first surfaced in 2005 (2014 facelift model pictured). The vehicle could be sold in Latin America and Europe by the Fiat Professional commercial vehicle arm from 2016.
According to the report, a large Fiat pickup has been “long-promised” by now-Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne. It was first due to arrive in 2008, based on the underpinnings of the Tata Xenon. Then it was re-announced in 2010, supposedly to be based on the Dodge Dakota. Neither came to fruition.
Fiat already sells a pickup in Latin America and Europe, but it’s car-based and rather small. Built in Brazil since 1996, the Fiat Strada (below), based on the Palio supermini, found more than 130,000 homes last year, making it Fiat Professional’s top seller.
Expanding the Fiat Professional line-up is one of the major things Marchionne wants to do to improve the carmaker’s business on the Continent. Fiat has lost 2.15 billion euro in Europe in the past three years, but aims to end losses by 2016, AN reports.
Fiat Professional is seen by financial analysts as a bright spot in Europe – the commercial vehicle arm has returned 200-300 million euro in annual operational profits for the last 10 years.
Perhaps the introduction of the bigger, Mitsubishi-based truck there could change things – the report says Marchionne is counting on it to increase Fiat’s global sales to 600,000 by 2018.
Fiat sold 431,000 vehicles last year – 179,000 in Latin America, 2,000 in Asia Pacific and the remaining quarter of a million in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Russia, AN reports. Learn more about the Mitsubishi-Nissan collaboration that will give birth to the Triton’s and Navara’s replacements this year.