Fiat Powertrain Technologies SpA has announced that it will invest EUR22m to build a research and development centre in Shanghai.

The wholly-owned Fiat Powertrain Technology Shanghai R&D Co Ltd, located in Jiading District in west Shanghai, will focus on the development of engines, both gasoline and diesel, and transmissions for cars and commercial vehicles, the subsidiary of Italy's Fiat Group said yesterday.

FPT Shanghai will employ 100 engineers by the end of next year when it officially starts operation.

"Developing anti-pollution engines would be one of the top priorities for FPT Shanghai as environmental protection is emphasized by the state government," said Paolo Emanuele Ferrero, vice president of FPT, product engineering, at the ground-breaking ceremony for the center yesterday.

FPT has established 12 R&D centers worldwide and the Shanghai centre is the first in Asia.

"The new engineering centre will not only be part of FPT's global network, but also allow us to join the steady growth in China's auto industry," Ferrero told the Shanghai Daily.

New engines and transmissions will be developed for Fiat's models in addition to supplying other carmakers in China.