A federal judge in Detroit directed the chief executives of General Motors and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles to meet in person and work to settle a suit that GM has brought against FCA: GM CEO Mary Barra and FCA CEO Mike Manley are instructed by U.S. District Court Judge Paul Borman to convene by July 1.
A spokesman said GM is confident about its case and looks forward to "constructive dialog" with its competitor. FCA offered no comment on the matter.
In November 2019 GM sued FCA alleging the over a period of years Chrysler officials bribed United Auto Workers leaders in an effort to gain bargaining advantage over other automakers, namely GM.
GM is seeking an untold sum in settlement for what the suit alleges has cost the company billions of dollars over years of UAW bargaining efforts.
The Tuesday hearing was called to hear FCA's plea for dismissal of the suit.
“What a waste of time and resources now and for the years to come in this mega-litigation if these automotive leaders and their large teams of lawyers are required to focus significant, time-consuming efforts to pursue this nuclear-option lawsuit if it goes forward,” Borman stated at the close of the hearing.
Borman opined that the automakers should focus on building cars and keeping people employed amid other financial and social crises.
The judge specifically directed Barra and Manley to join the meeting to seek an out-of-court settlement, even instructing them in social-distancing provisions.