Fiat History: Giovanni Agnelli and a group of investors founded FIAT (Fabbrica Italiana Automobili Torino) in 1899. Today Fiat operates in 61 countries and builds vehicles in Italy, Poland, Brazil, Argentina, France, Turkey, Egypt South Africa, India and China. Fiat is the largest automaker in Italy and owns the classic Lancia, Alfa Romeo, Fiat, Maserati and Ferrari car companies. Fiat also owns Case Construction, Case IH, Flexi-Coil, Kobelco, New Holland, New Holland Construction, and Fiat-Hitachi Construction. Paolo Fresco became chairman of Fiat in 1998 and Sergio Marchionne became CEO of Fiat in June of 2004.