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Fiat's Maserati to invest at least 1.6 bln euros to launch new models

Fiat Chrysler's luxury brand Maserati will invest at least 1.6 billion euros ($1.75 billion) to produce its first hybrid and electric models, including a new super sports car and a new sport utility vehicle, it said on Thursday.

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MILAN, Sept 26 (Reuters) - Fiat Chrysler's FCHA.MI luxury brand Maserati will invest at least 1.6 billion euros ($1.75 billion) to produce its first hybrid and electric models, including a new super sports car and a new sport utility vehicle, it said on Thursday.

The investment is part of a plan announced by Fiat Chrysler (FCA) last year to spend 5 billion euros in Italy between 2019-2021.

The Italian-American automaker expects the plan to help it catch up with its main competitors in developing electric vehicles and counter a year of declining sales in Europe.

Maserati said the new super sports model would be produced next year at its plant in Modena, northern Italy. The construction of a production line for the new SUV will start in early 2020 at the group's plant in Cassino, central Italy, with the first vehicles expected to hit the market in early 2021.

Maserati added it would start producing in Turin an electrified version of its Ghibli sedan, which is set to become the brand's first ever hybrid vehicle, in 2020.

It will also launch redesigned versions of its GranTurismo and GranCabrio models, the first full electric cars for Maserati.

Maserati will invest 800 million euros to produce the new SUV and a further 800 million euros for the electrified versions of GranTurismo and GranCabrio. The company did not disclose the investments required for the super sports car and the Ghibli.

($1 = 0.9124 euros)

(Reporting by Giulio Piovaccari, editing by Susan Fenton)

((giulio.piovaccari@thomsonreuters.com; +39 02 6612 9743; Reuters Messaging: giulio.piovaccari.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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