April 2017

A potential FCA merger with VW is pursued

FCA's CEO, Sergio Marchionne, is continuing to beg for a merger with Volkswagen, if his latest statements are true. Earlier in March, Marchionne proposed that a potential merger between FCA and VW could be beneficial for both brands, but later said he had no interest in actively chasing a merger with the German automotive group.

Quite recently, he changed his mind once again and said he would try to bargain with VW's CEO Matthias Müller to chat about a merger. Müller responded to Marchionne's initial suggestion of a merger by saying that he would be open to talks with FCA, but insisted Marchionne must approach him, not the other way around. Regrettably, the truth is that FCA is the one in most need of merging forces with another big automaker, not the other way around.

It seems that after a couple of years, the playground battle between the big titans in the automotive industry will be taken down to five groups. General Motors, Toyota, BMW Group, Renault-Nissan and FCA merged with VW Group.

What do we have in our exciting issue of April?
We start with the ultimate coverage of the most fashionable motor show around the globe: the Geneva Motor Show. We instinctively covered the best world premieres, debuts and concept models. Check it out.

Our cover story has been divided into two vehicles. I personally was in London on a discrete mission in January for a private reveal of the new member of the Range Rover family, the Velar. The Velar will fill in the gap between the Evoque and the Range Rover Sport. Nissan has revived the iconic model of the Nissan Patrol in an enhanced package, the Patrol Super Safari Y61. The good news about it is that this revival was based on the request of the loyal Middle East customers for the Patrol.

In Oman we drove the Lamborghini Huracán LP580-2 Spyder (rear-wheel drive version), with the other variants too, in a beautiful backdrop. In Dubai we had the chance to drive the Ram Trucks lineup that will make its introduction back again into the region.

I drove the new Nissan Kicks (a crossover that was launched last year during the Olympic games in Brazil) in Dubai. The Kicks is brought to our region and will replace both the Juke and Tiida hatchback in the GCC. In Lebanon and Jordan you will be able to get both Juke and Tiida.

Ershad laid down his hands on two splendid vehicles in Dubai. He tested the Infiniti Q50S Red Sport and the all-new 2017 Mazda CX-9.

We dedicated our tires' section to the latest innovations launched at the Geneva Motor Show by Goodyear. The future is near and I hope that these concept tires will make it into production one day.

Spring is already here, so it is the time to get out and do some outdoor activities before the heat of summer sets in. We fixed the date of our annual ArabWheels Awards ceremony; it will take place during the second day of the Dubai Motor Show on November 15th, 2017 at the Meydan Hotel in Dubai.

You can always check out our social media platforms for the latest on facebook, Instagram, and Twitter and watch our videos on our YouTube channel.

- Issam Eid, Editor-in-Chief

Cover Story: Range Rover Velar



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