She may only have one car line to watch over, but Laura Soave has her work cut out for her. She’s charged with re-launching the Fiat brand in North America after a three-decade-long absence.
Chrysler announced today that it is appointing Soave as the head of all Fiat brand operations in the U.S. and Canada. As is the case with the “CEOs” of the other Chrysler divisions, Soave will hold full responsibility for all profits and losses incurred by Fiat vehicles in North America, and will spearhead the integration of Fiat offerings into Chrysler’s existing sales and service networks.
“Laura joins Chrysler with extensive experience in automotive marketing,” said Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne. “Her rich background will serve as a springboard for reintroducing the Fiat brand when it takes to U.S. and Canadian roads this December.”
From 2009, Soave was the general manager of experiential marketing at Volkswagen of America. She worked at Ford since 1997. During that time, she served as Mercury’s marketing manager, a “brand DNA” manager for Ford, and also oversaw marketing for both small cars and large SUVs.
For now, her sole responsibility will lie with the retro-chic 500. It's the only Fiat-badged product to be sold in North America, but it will be offered in at least three different forms (including the 500C and hot Abarth). We hear production is scheduled to begin in Toluca, Mexico, this November, and cars should arrive in Chrysler showrooms before the end of the year.