Fiat aims to put its stamp on the global automotive industry

In 1985, the Big Three accounted for 80 percent of the US market, but by January of this year, Detroit's market share was down to 43 percent. With the ongoing decline of American auto manufacturing, Asian firms have leapt ahead of the Big Three, with Toyota (TM) leading the way.

Now Fiat is jumping into the fray. The Italian automaker wants to create a global automotive empire, second only to Toyota, and it wants to do it with bits and pieces of the American car industry -- two of the Big Three.

Sergio Marchionne, Fiat's CEO, may reveal plans Monday to spin off Fiat's core cars division, joining it with Chrysler and General Motors (GM) Europe, and creating a new publicly traded European car company.