Turin, Italy – Fiat has increased its share of the Chrysler Group by 5 per cent to a total 58.5 per cent, having achieved a fuel efficiency milestone required for the increase.

The increase marks the third “performance event” that allowed Fiat to increase its share in the U.S. automaker. The remaining 41.5 per cent of Chrysler’s equity is owned by VEBA, a trust fund for employee benefits.

To achieve this third milestone, known as the Ecological Event, Chrysler was required to receive regulatory approval for an automobile based on a Fiat platform or vehicle technology having a fuel efficiency rating of at least 40 combined miles per gallon (5.8 L/100 km) and to irrevocably commit to begin assembly in commercial quantities in the U.S.

In late December, Chrysler achieved the fuel economy test for an unadjusted combined rating of 40 mpg with a pre-production version of the Dodge Dart, based on Fiat architecture technology. The company has issued an irrevocable commitment to the U.S. Department of the Treasury to begin production in a facility in the U.S.

“The acquisition of a further 5 per cent of Chrysler is a fundamental step in completion of the integration between our two groups,” said Sergio Marchionne, CEO of Fiat and Chrysler Group. “We have worked hard on achievement of the Ecological Event over the past two and a half years, and we are particularly proud of this accomplishment because it represents repayment of the trust placed in Fiat to introduce its fuel-efficient cars and engines to the U.S. market. The commitment to ecological and sustainable mobility, which has made Fiat the most eco-performing automaker in Europe, is integral to our business strategy. Together with the know-how developed by Chrysler, we have formed a strong, competitive auto group with a technological capability among the most innovative in the world.”

Connect with Autos.ca