Sabah – Italian carmaker Fiat is preparing for re-entry to the compact car market with the Aegea platform to be manufactured at the Tofas plant in Bursa, Turkey. First unveiled as a sedan at the Istanbul Auto Show 2015, the Aegea line will acquire hatchback and station wagon versions in the near future, enabling Fiat to compete in the key segments of the European market.
The Aegea will have a new name when it hits the market later this year in its sedan form, while the hatchback and station wagon will reach dealers in 2016 and 2017, respectively. Tofas, the joint venture between Koc Holding and Fiat, invested USD 520 million in the Bursa plant to manufacture the new compact class.
Tofas’ R&D department was heavily involved in the design and engineering of the Aegea platform, which derives its name from the Aegean Sea. The first of the production models will roll out of the Bursa plant by November. Tofas will export the vehicle to over 40 countries in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.
Having stopped production of the Bravo model in 2013, the Italian carmaker lacked an alternative in the compact hatchback class and is relying on the Aegea hatchback for a share of the European market dominated by VW Golf. Similarly, the station wagon to be manufactured at the Bursa plant is a first for the brand since 2008.
Known for its high-quality and cost-effective production operations, the Tofas Bursa plant is one of Fiat’s key production centers, currently manufacturing Minicargo-based commercial vehicles and the Linea sedan.
Home to manufacturing plants of global brands such as Fiat, Ford, Toyota, Honda, Renault, and Hyundai, Turkey is a major manufacturer of motor vehicles in Europe, with over 1 million vehicles produced annually.