The top stories from Automotive News Europe's November 22, 1999, issue -- and how they developed.
Ford Th!nks green
Ford is forming an umbrella company to bring its electric and alternative fuel vehicles to market called the Th!nk Group. The Norwegian government helped Ford established a Th!nk production facility in Aurskog, Norway, where the first-generation Th!nk City vehicles were produced. However, the limited range and performance of the cars hurt their appeal. In 2002, Ford decided instead to invest in other low-emission alternatives. This summer, Ford faced strong opposition from environmental groups such as Greenpeace for planning to destroy hundreds of Th!nk City models. An agreement between Ford, the Norwegian government and transport company Wallenius Wilhelmsen was reached in September that allows Ford to ship to Norway for resale up to 300 of the 3-year-old battery-electric cars from the US and various European countries. Wallenius Wilhelmsen will cover the shipping costs. The cars will begin to arrive in Norway by the end of the year. Those cars that can be reconditioned will be resold.
Ferrari to drive Maserati
Ferrari has full control of Maserati. It bought the 50 percent stake in the company it didn't already own for an undisclosed sum from Fiat Auto, November 11, 1999. Ferrari bought the first half of the share in July 1997.