By on November 4, 2015


Alfa Romeo will delay two models critical to that brand’s comeback and will likely miss its ambitious sales target of 400,000 cars by 2018, according to Automotive News.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne said a weakened market in China forced the brand to reassess its sales target, which he initially set in 2014.

“I still think that Alfa belongs in China,” Marchionne said last week during the company’s announced third quarter earnings call, according to the Detroit Free Press. “The expectations of volumes out of the total pool of 400,000 cars by (2018) are, I think, given current market conditions, not achievable.” (Read More…)

By on October 21, 2015

Sergio Marchionne - FCA

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles chief Sergio Marchionne rang the opening bell Wednesday for Ferrari’s first day of trading on the New York Stock Exchange and shares of the supercar maker soared.

The stock, which was up as high as $60 per share, leveled off around $57 in mid-day trading.

“This is not really a car, it’s a unique expression of art and technology,” Marchionne told Bloomberg.

(Read More…)

By on October 13, 2015

Marchionne - Picture courtesy

Like Al Pacino in “The Godfather 2,” Sergio Marchionne’s move to insulate himself further and tap future successors has claimed another victim. On Monday, former Fiat North American chief Jason Stoicevich resigned from the automaker, days after he was replaced as head of Fiat by Dodge CEO Tim Kuniskis.

Stoicevich was a longtime FCA employee, heading up the automaker’s California sales office and former head of Jeep operations before that.

His departure is the latest in a company-wide shakeup to consolidate most North American brands between fewer brand chiefs.

(Read More…)

By on October 12, 2015

Apple iOS in a Car + Ferrari LaFerrari

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles on Monday finally priced its initial price offering for Ferrari at $48 and $52 per share for 10 percent of the luxury carmaker when its stock goes sale, the Detroit News reported. The pricing values Ferrari at roughly $9.8 billion — less than the $12 billion reported last week — and analysts say the interest in the stock, which will trade under the symbol RACE, is roughly 10 times higher than available shares.

The IPO is part of FCA’s long-term strategy to raise cash for investment in its own vehicles in Jeep, Dodge, Fiat, Chrysler and Maserati brands. According to paperwork filed ahead of the IPO, 10 percent of the company will remain with Ferrari scion Piero, 80 percent will be distributed among Fiat family ownership.

(Read More…)

By on October 9, 2015


The supercar maker may be valued at more than $12.4 billion ahead of its initial public offering, which could happen as early as Friday, Bloomberg (via Automotive News) reported.

Ferrari may price its shares Friday night when it offers 10 percent of the Maranello-based automaker to the public. The remaining ownership of the carmaker will remain largely with the same ownership group, comprised mostly of the Agnelli family and Piero Lardi Ferrari.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne said in July that Ferrari would be worth roughly $11 billion, which analysts balked at being a little ambitious. Since then, Ferrari’s value may have climbed as Marchionne told investors that Ferrari wasn’t necessarily an automaker, but rather a luxury brand that could be more profitable than a traditional carmaker.

(Read More…)

By on September 15, 2015

Sergio Marchionne. Photo courtesy Toledo Blade.

Representatives from the United Auto Workers and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles agreed Tuesday to extend their contract on an “hour-by-hour” basis, Reuters reported. Workers reported Tuesday for their morning shifts, but those workers could walk out at any time if talks stall.

On Monday, it became clear that the UAW would set its sights on FCA and their larger share of Tier 2 workers — workers hired after the recession at a lower hourly wage — as the union aims to “bridge the gap” between the two tiers.

According to the report, the union may opt to strike, stage a limited walkout or continue negotiations if talks reach an impasse.

(Read More…)

By on September 14, 2015


The UAW has chosen FCA US to bat leadoff in the union’s contract talks with the Detroit Three, prompting CEO Sergio Marchionne to forgo Frankfurt.

The move by the union to go after the weakest of the Detroit Three is meant to establish how all of the contract talks this month will proceed, Automotive News writes, with the possibility of striking out should the union not receive what they seek; the last UAW strike occurred with General Motors in 2007.

(Read More…)

By on September 6, 2015

Sergio Marchionne - FCA

Speaking at the Formula One Italian Grand Prix this weekend, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne told Reuters that a merger with General Motors was at the top of his list.

“That discussion remains a high priority for FCA,” Marchionne told Reuters. “We consider it to be the best possible strategic alternative for us and for them. General Motors does remain the ideal partner for us and we represent a not easily replaceable alternative for them.”

(Emphasis mine. But what are the other “strategic alternatives?”)

(Read More…)

By on September 1, 2015


Farmers are the ultimate craftsman when it comes to small-scale production. The level of management needed to stay competitive and above the high water line is, simply put, astounding. Consolidation in certain areas of agriculture has lead to factory farming, the widespread adoption of automation and genetically modified seeds that keep seed producers competitive. Private farmers are constantly at war with the market and their own budgets.

The agriculture industry has wholly transformed itself over the last 100 years. The automotive industry, which has only really existed for that same period of time, has seen similar levels of change. We are now building more cars, trucks, SUVs, crossovers, trikes and quadracycles than ever before, just like we are growing more food than we’ve ever seen in human history.

But, there’s one major stumbling block ahead — and Sergio Marchionne sees it.

(Read More…)

By on September 1, 2015


Mergers don’t excite me.

I’m not excited about the prospect of walking in to my neighborhood Jeep/Chevy/Buick/Dodge/GMC superstore and thumbing through the soul-less car stocks like a weekend trip to Costco.

Bark makes a good business case that Mazda and Subaru could help each other in worldwide sales, and brings up some interesting short-term mashups: rotary engines with all-wheel drive, a boxer in a Miata, et al. All those things sound fun like monster trucks and cans of Pabst on a Friday night.

But in reality, despite repeated calls from automakers that consolidation will mean the car business can stay “in business,” mergers don’t make better products — but they try to make shareholders happy, if they can even do that (see: Suzuki-Volkswagen, page 231 of your textbook). Shared R&D is often synonymous with “badge engineering” (Cimarron) and when it’s not, well, just look at Saab.

If history has taught us anything, mergers simply leave car people left out in the cold.  (Read More…)

Recent Comments

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote


  • Contributing Writers

  • Jack Baruth, United States
  • Bark M., United States
  • Chris Tonn, United States
  • Doug DeMuro, United States
  • Steven Lang, United States
  • Brendan McAleer, Canada
  • Vojta Dobes, Czech Republic
  • Matthias Gasnier, Australia
  • W. Christian 'Mental' Ward, United States
  • Cameron Aubernon, United States