Former Ferrari chief executive and chairman Sergio Marchionne has died.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) announced on Saturday that Marchionne, 66, had stepped down from his roles due to complications after recent surgery.

And the Italian passed away on Wednesday, John Elkann, his replacement as chairman, confirmed.

"Unfortunately, what we feared has come to pass. Sergio Marchionne, man and friend, is gone," he said in a statement.

Marchionne was credited with returning Ferrari to one of the leading teams in motorsport and Formula One chairman and CEO Chase Carey described him as “both a leader and a friend”.

“We are deeply saddened by the passing of Sergio Marchionne,” he said. “He was a great leader of not just Formula 1 and the automobile world, but the business world overall.

“He led with great passion, energy and insight, and inspired all around him. His contributions to Formula 1 are immeasurable.

"He was also a true friend to all of us and he will be deeply missed. At this difficult time we extend our deepest sympathies to his family, friends and colleagues.”