By on November 4, 2015

150624_Alfa-romeo_Giulia-Reveal_01

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.”

According to the Automotive News report, Alfa Romeo will delay its Giulia Quadrifoglio sedan by six months in Europe and a Giulia-based SUV by nine months. The scheduled launches for both cars would likely happen in mid-2016 and early 2017, respectively. Those cars would likely make their way to North America roughly three to six months after their European debut.

The two cars for Alfa Romeo were vitally important to the brand’s success and future against luxury competitors in Europe, such as Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Audi.

Talking to investors, Marchionne said that Alfa would continue its global investment of $5 billion in Alfa, but that its build-out would likely finish in 2019 or 2020, instead of 2018. That investment reportedly includes eight new models for the Italian brand, including compact and full-size sedans and SUVs.

According to analysts, pulling back Alfa could be a reassessment of that brand’s future after plans for luxury brand Maserati haven’t materialized.

“It’s a bit odd to start blaming China for a fundamental change in the plan for Alfa,” Max Warburton, an analyst for Bernstein, told Automotive News. “Maserati was the dry run for Alfa and it has not gone to plan.”

Alfa Romeo unveiled the Giulia Quadrifoglio in June and displayed the car in Frankfurt shortly thereafter. Journalists said many features, such as the car’s interior — particularly the center console and shift knob — felt unfinished. Under the hood, the Alfa creates 510 horsepower and rockets up to 60 mph in under four seconds.

Alfa Romeo has not yet announced a price for the Giulia Quadrifoglio.

Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

Recommended

35 Comments on “Report: Alfa Romeo Pushes Back Giulia, SUV At Least 6 Months...”


  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    “given current market conditions, not achievable.”

    How about given -any- market conditions, Mr. Marchionne. We could have told you this back then and saved some annoyance to your accountants and embarrassment for FCA. It’s got nothing to do with China.

    But these six months will give you time to debut the new Grand Wagoneer and also start work on the Yukon competitor for 2019. And find a merge partner who will have you in bed. And fix your transmission issues with vans. And revitalize your aged passenger car lineup. Right?

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      By the time 2019/20 rolls around, Sergio and the Agnelli family will have cashed out and someone else will be in charge. The FCA employees I know (Warren Truck, Sterling Heights Assembly, Jefferson North, and Auburn Hills) constantly talk about a merger.

    • 0 avatar
      and003

      For Marchionne, it has a lot to do with China, since it’s currently the world’s largest automotive market. Were it not for the increase of regulatory scrutiny and falling demand for imported cars in China, he might have achieved his goal of 400,000 cars by 2018.

      As it stands now, that particular goal won’t be achievable until 2019 or 2020, and he’s going to have to revamp the Alfa schedule to make it happen.

  • avatar
    philadlj

    GIULIAHAHAHAHA.

    I should have known that Alfa rebirth delays weren’t over.

    And “ambitious” is generous way to describe their sales target. More like “delusional.”

    Dany Bahar LOTUS delusional.

    • 0 avatar
      whynot

      I remember I was in middle school when I first heard Alfa’s return was imminent. I graduated from college 3 years ago.

      Mid 2016 launch with US launch a few months after that? I’m guessing Q1 2017 at the earliest.

      • 0 avatar
        dwford

        Haha so true. Alfa’s comeback has been a few years away for 20 years (at least) now. I think most people just roll their eyes with every new plan, but I’m sure they fooled a lot of people by building a couple show cars this time instead of just having an outline on paper. Sneaky.

        While FCA wastes time with this, they have no real electric car, no dedicated hybrid, no hybrids of their other cars, no mainstream subcompact car, and far too many brands to manage: Fiat, Maserati, Alfa, Ferrari, Dodge, Ram, Chrysler, SRT, Jeep – none of which is a regular mainstream brand with a full lineup.

        • 0 avatar
          whynot

          Substitute Lancia for SRT, as they haven given up their attempt to make SRT its own brand (now just the Dodge performance trim). Who knows how long Lancia will be around though.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Lancia is basically dead. They sell a hideous hatchback that is based on the Panda and two Chrysler badge swaps.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            I want someone with a 300 to do a badge and exterior grille/etc swap with the Theta here in the US.

            They were selling an even more hideous PT Cruiser for a long time.

          • 0 avatar
            Roberto Esponja

            CoreyDL, you can get a real one (or more) right in Miami:

            http://old.casmiami.com/listings.asp?mode=displaycar&CAR=21489

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            That’s brilliant! How did they manage that? Here as a test car? Someone paid to have one imported under the “Significantly Similar So It’s OK” import provision?

            But no 3.0CRD at that time for the 300 here, so I think that’d be a prob.

          • 0 avatar
            Tosh

            On the 3.0CRD in Miami: “No Sales to NAFTA”

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Ah ha. So someone has been driving it under a false/manufacturer plate most the time, and now they want to get away from it.

            I wonder how many months I could drive around here with an incorrect plate on my car. I’m thinking several, or a year.

        • 0 avatar

          Sergio believes in many brands he wants a brand for each type of car or the opposite of everyone else. He has no interest in having one full line.
          I think it’s nuts but that appears to be what he wants.

    • 0 avatar
      and003

      Given how he was able to turn Chrysler and Fiat around when he was the CEO of both companies before the merger, I’m not sure I would call his sales target delusional. He can achieve that goal, but given China’s economic situation, it’s not likely to happen before 2019 or 2020. And if Mr. Warburton’s suspicions are right, Maserati’s situation isn’t exactly helping matters.

      • 0 avatar
        bball40dtw

        It delusional because he’s predicting huge sales numbers for a brand that is basically as relevant in Europe as Mitsubishi is here. The bulk of sales were supposed to be from China and the US. Alfa hasn’t sold anything but the 4C here in decades. We aren’t missing anything.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    Tell you where Maserati IS selling though – out in CA. In LA they were all over the place. I saw more Maseratis than Buick and Volvo and Subaru combined.

    PS. People in LA are not buying Buick, Volvo, or Subaru at all. Over 8 days I saw 1 Enclave, 2 Veranos, 2 S60’s, 1 XC60, and like 2 old WRX wagons and one new STI.

    I saw more Cressidas than I did Volvos, for reals.

  • avatar
    Rod Panhard

    It’s more than interesting that on the day we read that FCA will delay upscale Alfa-Romeo products, again, Hyundai announces that they will launch upscale Genesis products.

    Maybe FCA should just sell the shop to Hyundai.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      I’d have a Hyundai/Kia long before I considered any current Chrysler product. A statement I’d not have made five years ago.

      That Elantra GT is a looker. The Azera has come up a bit as well, and the new Genesis is about 98% there (with there being the standard bearer, LS).

      • 0 avatar
        davefromcalgary

        As I posted yesterday, first H/K I’d want to spend my own money on is the 2015 Forte 5 SX Turbo. The SX tightens up the looks, and way more tech available at a lower price than even my “upscale” Buick. Probably the only thing my Buick has on it is isolation and/or raw comfort. And power but I’m sure the 1.6T in the Forte is more than adequate.

        As I posted the other day much to Deadweight’s derision, I really like what they’ve done with the current 200S AWD, (big 6, trick awd system, nice exterior design, low out the door pricing) but I’d be scared to actually buy one. Having a warranty to fix all the little crap is nice, but it still takes a lot of time and aggravation.

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          If it makes you feel any better about not buying one, the guys that assemble the 200 don’t think it’s made to last. They are happy to get the RAM instead.

        • 0 avatar
          SC5door

          The problem with the Forte is that the “goodies” are now packaged in these extra large bundles. Want a sunroof? That’s $4,200 on the SX 5 door.

          When I had my 2011 there were more options to pick from individually. A sunroof was $800 I believe. I’d love to have one again, although I’d just get an EX with the 17’s and the 2.0L engine–which is enough power for me. Plenty of space inside, my bike and camping gear all fit in there for the weekend. It also carried a chest freezer home once from Lowes; the clerk wasn’t so sure when I walked up to it though…lol

          For some dumb reason the power seat was dropped from the EX tech pack for `16—only available on the SX.

  • avatar
    seth1065

    Alfa coming back to the USA sure seems like a pipe dream, starting to think the Turkish Saab might make it back here before Alfa has a few models here. I understand FCA wants / needs a sugar daddy but the dance is getting Late and no one has asked them to dance.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    China, China, China!

    youtube.com/watch?v=-yZHveWFvqM

  • avatar
    Speed3

    I know Sergio wants his golden parachute real bad, but you don’t leave until the job is done. Nobody wants to bail out FCA. Maybe some automakers are open to strategic partnerships, can’t Sergio just work on those? A hostile takeover of GM is never going to happen, the unions would never get behind it.

    Anyway, this doesn’t bode well for FCA. I have a hunch all is not well.

    • 0 avatar
      Lorenzo

      The breakup of the Agnelli-owned conglomerate involved spinoffs of various divisions free of debt, with the Agnelli family owning a chunk of the stock in the new entities. All the debt remained with Fiat auto group, and then FCA. It amounts to $42 billion in long term debt, a big lump for any merger partner to swallow.

      The original intent may have been to spin off Alfa, Ferrari and Maserati, and let the remaining hulk go bankrupt,spreading the losses to stock and bond holders. The gift of Chrysler may have altered that plan, but Marchionne hasn’t been able to translate the gift into a viable auto company.

      He’s a deal maker, not a car guy, and needs a deal every few years to cover up the fact neither he nor the Fiat people know how to run an efficient car company. He really needed to hire a car guy – even Maximum Bob Lutz – to run operations, but he tried to do it himself, letting models get stale (300) and dropping models with no replacement ready (Avenger, PT cruiser), and deluding himself into thinking Fiat tech was advanced when it was actually a half decade behind Chrysler.

  • avatar
    davefromcalgary

    Meh. Dont care.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      Dave speaks for a vast majority of North America when it comes to this topic. Alfas haven’t been around for decades, and we don’t feel like we are missing anything.

      • 0 avatar
        dwford

        True. They are pushing so hard to bring Alfa back for the silent hoards of Alfa enthusiasts they think exist but really don’t. In the end they will have an Alfa focused on sport, when even BMW has essentially given that up to cater to the luxury end of the market. We have seen time and again that the brand focused on the enthusiast market just doesn’t work out – Pontiac, Dodge, Mazda currently.

  • avatar

    This will be perfectly timed…for when FCA and VW announce their merger plans. Dr Piech (yes, I know he’s “retired”, but I bet still calling the shots behind the scenes), will finally get his hands on the much coveted Alfa Romeo brand and Sergio will ride off into the sunset with a big bag off cash, ala Bob Eaton.

  • avatar
    DeadWeight

    Alfa Romeo offering vehicles in the already crowded, saturated and fiercely competitive U.S. market are an answer to a question that almost no one (even by enthusiast standards, so maybe .001% of the general population) is asking.

    Also, the rumors of a mashup between FCA and VW are hilarious inasmuch as that would lead to yet another German-American synergetic disaster (with Chrysler & Daimler being the last such one), but these rumors are definitely out there and pervasive, as I’ve even heard them from two FCA employees in the last week.

    • 0 avatar
      smartascii

      I don’t think the American market is asking questions about brands. There are some PR people who think that, and there are some brands who have shat so mightily all over themselves that they can’t sell even good products, but a startlingly large chunk of the car market is composed of people who want something pretty with a sunroof that they can lease for $299/mo. If Alfa can make such a car, and smear it with a little bit of Euro-pastiche, combined with an ad campaign that does not revolve around the fact that their spokesmodel is famous or pretty, they might be able to capture more of the market than we all think.

  • avatar
    and003

    It must really grill Marchionne’s goose to have to delay vehicles important to Alfa Romeo’s revival, especially since he and his FCA associates went to all the trouble to make the Giulia a competitive product.


Back to TopLeave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Recent Comments

  • Hummer: “Here in BC, my F350 insurance alone was 1900/yr. And that was with a full 43 % safe old fart discount.”...
  • trackratmk1: Assuming for a moment that widespread electrification comes to pass, what are the differentiators going...
  • jacob_coulter: Less taxes are not the same thing as a handout.
  • sgeffe: Next time, he’ll buy the damned TruCoat! “You’re darn tootin’, I gotta deal for ya!”
  • Hummer: Sporty, True about focus and fusion already built elsewhere. Though an executive car like a new Crown Vic...

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Staff

  • Contributors

  • Timothy Cain, Canada
  • Matthew Guy, Canada
  • Ronnie Schreiber, United States
  • Bozi Tatarevic, United States
  • Chris Tonn, United States
  • Corey Lewis, United States
  • Mark Baruth, United States
  • Moderators

  • Adam Tonge, United States
  • Corey Lewis, United States