Fiat to move into Luxury market

Fiat chiefs have said that the company is working on expanding into the premium and luxury market in an effort to boost its appeal to a wider range of drivers.

Exact details have yet to be released about the plans, but Fiat says that it’s currently working on a new series of vehicles described as “aspirational models with a premium feel”.

Do we need bigger Fiats?

Currently, the company’s biggest seller is its retro-modern 500 series, which has helped propel Fiat’s market share up in its respective segments, but the Italian marque says it’s hungry for more.

Speaking at the launch of the new 500X crossover model, Fiat’s chief marketing officer Olivier Francois said that the company can’t continue to limit itself solely to smaller models.

He said: “Small cars have been Fiat’s bread and butter, but one cannot survive on bread and butter alone. Now and again, we need some marmalade to make it more interesting.

“That is why we need to look at segments beyond A and B. Crossovers like the 500X, as well as new, aspirational premium models will help us to regain that territory.”

Luxury Fiats with the help of Mazda

The first of the new luxury range is expected to be either a Fiat or Abarth-badgedsports car that’s been developed in conjunction with Mazda, as Fiat helped to design the new MX-5.

Expected to debut next year, Fiat is also reportedly working on a replacement for the old Bravo hatchback, which is thought to take the form of a crossover and due to arrive in 2016.

The new crossover model is aimed at taking on class leaders like the Nissan Qashqai, and according to previous reports from Fiat, could land in the next couple of years.

Fiat’s latest model, the 500X, was only introduced early last month, but has already made quite an impression, having been named the number one car to look out for in 2015 by Auto Express.

Designed as a larger and tougher version of the 500 city car, the 500X features five doors and an extended wheelbase, plus a wide range of personalisation options and standard kit.

Power for the model comes courtesy of a range of frugal but capable petrol and diesel engines, while Fiat has also thrown in optional four-wheel drive and a Traction Plus system for off-roading.

Pricing for the 500X has yet to be announced, but the model will go on sale in the middle of next year, while Fiat is expected to announce its new range soon thereafter.