Umberto Agnelli, the chairman of Italian car maker Fiat, has died at his home in Turin, aged 69.

Mr Agnelli had been suffering from cancer, which had prevented him from attending Fiat’s AGM on 11th May.

He followed his brother, the legendary Gianni Agnelli who died last year, into the chairman’s role in 2003.

Mr Agnelli had served with the company in a number of roles, and had been chief executive of Fiat Auto in the 1980s.

His death comes soon after the company announced loses for the first three months of 2004 of 158m Euros (£105m), down from 342m Euros (£228m) for the same period last year.