TURIN (Reuters) - Stellantis Chief Executive Carlos Tavares said on Wednesday the automaker would extend the production of its best-selling Fiat Panda petrol city car to 2030, in a bid to bring affordability to clients.

The internal combustion engine version of the Panda, which is produced in Pomigliano d'Arco near Naples, was scheduled to be phased out in 2027, while a brand new, electrified version of the vehicle is expected to be launched later this year.

"We hear fake news that Stellantis wants to leave Italy. We're investing heavily in Italy,° Tavares said, while inaugurating Stellantis' facility for the production of electrified dual-clutch transmissions (eDCT) for hybrid and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, within the group's Mirafiori complex in Turin.

(This story has been refiled to fix typo in the headline)

(Reporting by Giulio Piovaccari, editing by Alvise Armellini)