Yeltsin promises support
MOSCOW - Russian President Boris Yeltsin is expected to promise state support for the joint venture between Fiat Auto and AvtoGAZ when he visits Italy in February.
The venture, called Nizhny Novgorod Motors, will start producing Fiat cars later this year at AvtoGAZ's plant.
The partners plan to build a greenfield plant by 2000 with a capacity of 150,000 cars a year.
NEW DELHI - Maruti Udyog's partners are appealing to the public for support in their battle over who should lead the company.
Suzuki Motor Corp. took out full-page newspaper ads to detail its contributions to the success of India's market-leading carmaker.
The government industry ministry then leaked a memo saying that it had taken all the risks and expense, including Rs23 billion ($590 million) in tax and duty concessions.
Ford recruits Fiesta suppliers
NEW DELHI - Ford has set up a network of 77 suppliers to provide components for its joint venture with Mahindra and Mahindra, which will build the Fiesta starting in mid-1999. Suppliers include Krupp Camford-Jai Bharat, GKN-Invel and Wheels India.
Ford launches loans to Russians
MOSCOW - Ford has launched a pilot program to offer loans to Russian car buyers. Ford's partners in the project are the US-Russia Investment Fund and Moscow-based Probiznesbank. Private buyers will be offered 18- month loans at 18 percent interest a year.
Alfa 156 orders up
TURIN - Orders for the Alfa Romeo 156 are at the upper limit of Fiat's expectations, said Roberto Testore, Fiat Auto managing director, with about 50,000 arriving before 1 January and more than 5,000 since. Some 55 percent are coming from outside Italy.
Saab buys Swiss importer Scancars
TROLLHATTAN - Saab has bought its Swiss importer Scancars AG, and renamed it Saab Automobile (Schweiz) AG. Saab has owned 25 percent of the shares since 1982. The importer sold 1,800 cars in 1996.
Volvo Finance will leave Switzerland
GOTHENBURG - Volvo Group Finance, the carmaker's wholly owned bank, will close its Swiss office. Twenty staff will be laid off over the course of 1998. The bank's European operations will be concentrated in Gothenburg.