FCA MoparFiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) is to turn the historic Fiat plant at Rivalta, near Turin, into a parts distribution centre (PDC) serving Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), among other markets.

The new PDC in Italy will support customers at more than 5,000 locations, significantly improving delivery time to dealerships and workshops, according to FCA.

It will cover some 340,000 sq.m in all with 40,000 sq.m of new buildings. The storage and dispatch area will be positioned to provide quick access to main roads. By 2020, Rivalta will also host Mopar’s regional headquarters.

Mopar – a contraction of ‘motor’ and ‘parts’ – is the service, parts and customer-care brand for FCA vehicles. In the past 12 months, it has distributed over 47,000 tonnes of parts and accessories to more than 7,000 dealers and workshops throughout the EMEA region. In Europe, the brand offers over 260,000 accessories and parts across all group models.

US-based FCA said the rapid global expansion of Mopar – which currently operates in more than 160 markets with PDCs in over 20 countries – had prompted the decision to transform Rivalta.

Mopar’s head of parts and service, Pietro Gorlier, who is also chief operating officer of the EMEA region, said: “Delivery of the right part at the right time around the globe is at the core of what we do, so we continue to invest in our 50-plus parts distribution centres worldwide. In the case of Rivalta, we are proud to revive a building with a great industrial legacy and transform it into a state-of the art, forward-looking international parts distribution hub that will serve our markets in Europe and beyond.”

FCA said the conversion project would include energy-efficient and environmentally sustainable features such as solar panels, rainwater recovery systems and the use of eco-friendly materials. In addition, resource life cycle from production to disposal will be assessed.

News of Mopar’s move into Rivalta comes a month after FCA said it was selling Italian-based automotive components business Magneti Marelli to the parent company of Japanese components supplier Calsonic Kansei in a deal worth around $7 billion. An FCA spokesperson said the two announcements were unrelated.