134 Fiat Topolino seized by customs: Stellantis' battle with Italy continues

Yet another story between the Italian government and the Stellantis group. After theAlfa Romeo Milano, renamed Junior deemed misleading by the Italian government, it is another model that is now attracting the wrath of the authorities.. No fewer than 134 Fiat Topolinos have been seized in Italy. The reason? They fly an Italian flag even though they are made in Morocco.. This information was relayed by the Italian newspaper Il Tirreno :

"They're not "made in Italy. The electric cars, produced in Morocco, carried the Italian flag. According to the finance and customs agencies, this is a distinctive sign that is misleading for consumers. [...] This is why officials from the Finance Agency and the State Agency have accused Stellantis of falsely indicating the origin of the product".

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Fiat Topolino not seized by customs. Photo IL TIRRENO

The authorities invoked the 2004 financial law and article 517 of the Italian penal code on thehe sale of industrial products with misleading signs. According to the prosecutors, the tricolour flags on the doors of the cars gave the mistaken impression that the vehicles were made in ItalyThey come from Stellantis' Moroccan factories.

The cars, destined to be marketed in Italy, are currently in judicial custody at the "Leonardo Da Vinci" terminals. Among the vehicles seized are 119 Fiat Topolino and 15 Fiat Topolino Dolcevita, all intended for young drivers without a B licence.

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Faced with this situation, Stellantis was quick to respond with a statement In the port of Livorno, the Customs Agency and the Finance Agency seized Topolino cars imported from Morocco, the country of manufacture of the vehicles, on the grounds that a small sticker in the colors of the Italian flag affixed to the doors could constitute a false indication of the origin of the goods. The sole purpose of the sticker in question was to indicate the product's entrepreneurial origin. In fact, the design of the new Topolino, Fiat's historic car since 1936, was conceived and developed in Turin by a team of professionals from the Centro Stile Fiat of Stellantis Europe S.p.A., an Italian company".

The Stellantis group defends itself by claiming that it has always been transparent about the Moroccan origin of Fiat Topolino production. To solve the problem, thehe company has announced that it will be doing away with its three-colour stickers.subject to authorization by the authorities.

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This case could also affect the new Fiat 600made in Poland, which sports an Italian flag on its rear bumper. Such situations raise questions about the perception and protection of "made in Italy", as well as the communication strategies of automotive groups in the face of national regulations. The tug-of-war between Stellantis and the Italian government seems far from over...

12 Comments

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  1. How can you prove customs wrong when all you need is a flag to claim it's Italian?
    It's like all those products sold in France when the barcode doesn't start with 800...
    107 billion lost for the Italian economy in this scheme.
    Worse,Tichy's excuse for Italy,which is a historical ally,far more valiant than this is ...Stellantis....

  2. It's like for clothes, there should be a label or a sticker to indicate the place of manufacture. That way, consumers would have the information.
    There are Italian brand clothes made outside Italy, and nobody complains. You can also buy made in Italy, but it's more expensive.

    • Several years ago, even before Stellantis, at the time of the Dacia Spring, I believe, I also suggested the idea of showrooms displaying the car's origin to inform and raise awareness.

  3. At the same time, this Italian law is nothing new: Stellantis makes Italian cars with a Psa makeover, and the Ypsilon developed in Sochaux ..... is nothing to dream about, there won't be 2 design offices, and FiatPowerTrain has less work to do since they only swear by puretoc........my congratulations to the Italian government.

  4. Putting bladders in front of lanterns is simply ex-PSA's business plan.

    They speak of a "French flagship" for a sedan based on a compact made in China. When you know that, you know what I mean.

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