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Viaggio enters China production in June; India debut delayed

by Bill Cawthon on

Indian Auto Blog says production of the new Viaggio will begin on june 28 at the Guangqi-Fiat joint venture plant at Changsha, in Hunan province. Plans call for the new car to begin arriving at dealers late in the third quarter.

The Viaggio is a reskinned Dodge Dart and will be offered with a 1.4-liter, four-cylinder T-Jet engine producing either 120 or 140 horsepower. Transmission choices are five-speed manual or a six-speed dual clutch automatic. Prices start at 120,000 yuan (about $18,844).

The Indian market will have to wait: Fiat India has ruled out launching the Viaggio in this financial year. With the company’s split from Tata, the remaining Indian dealer network is too small and could cripple the launch. Fiat wants to have at least 100 dealers, a process it figures will take about 18 months.

Thanks to “DPASHBY” for the Tip!

Bill Cawthon grew up in the auto industry in the 1950s. His Dad worked for Chrysler and Bill spent a number of Saturdays down on the plant floor at Dodge Main in Hamtramck. Bill is also the U.S. market correspondent for just-auto.com, a British auto industry publication, and a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association, which has named the Jeep Grand Cherokee the “SUV of Texas” several times and named the Ram 1500 as the “Truck of Texas” two years running.

Bill has owned five Plymouths (including the only 1962 “Texan”), one Dodge and one Chrysler and is still trying to figure out how to justify a Wrangler. He also has owned at least one of every 1:87 scale model of a Chrysler product. You can reach him directly at (206) 888-7324 or by using the form.

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