Handelsblatt reports that Chief Execurive Haydan Leshel is set to leave Fiat Automobil AG, to be replaced by Klaus Fricke, who currently works as marketing director at the Turin head office of parent company Fiat SpA.

The report says that dissatisfaction with the performance of Fiat's German arm has been mounting in Turin in recent weeks.

Fiat's German sales have declined in recent years and the company has now been overtaken by Renault as the top importer of cars to Germany.

Handelsblatt adds that Fiat SpA's CEO, Giancarlo Boschetti, is reported to have insisted on the change.

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