Dodge just pulled back the curtain on its newest vehicle, the Hornet crossover, but there are already rumblings of discontent from other brands within the Stellantis family. Dodge based much of the Hornet’s underpinnings on the Alfa Romeo Tonale, a move many within the Italian brand are unhappy with.
Editor’s note: This is the first in an occasional series.
Enzo Ferrari. You probably know who he is, thanks to the eponymous car brand he started in 1947 — but what you probably don’t know is that il Commendatore was already a legend, years before he hung out his own shingle … and the twin-engine, Alfa Romeo Bimotore racer from 1935 is a big part of the reason why.
This wasn’t some crazy, “let’s see if we can” sort of project, either. This twin-engine terror was born out of necessity — the necessity to beat the German Auto Union and Mercedes-Benz “Silver Arrows”, anyway.
Delayed by the semiconductor deficit, the 2023 Alfa Romeo Tonale is here and nearly ready for production.
It’s gone through some subtle changes since its 2019 debut at the Geneva Motor Show. But the Tonale, which I recently learned isn’t Italian for toenail, has remained true to the concept. The traditional Alfa grille has been retained while the razor-thin headlights have been widened slightly to make the signature LED elements more visible. But it’s otherwise indistinguishable from the concept without popping the hood or examining the non-fungible token (NFT) that comes with the car.
You finally did it, didn’t you? You beautiful disaster, you did it! You spent nearly $30,000 US American dollars on thirty-seven-year-old Toyota Corolla because of a comic book, and you aren’t even mad about it. Hell, you paid a little extra for the “authentic” Fujiwara Tofu Shop decals on the doors. You. Kick. Rear. And now, after you didn’t think it could be possible to feel better about your automotive purchase, I’m going to make you feel better about your automotive purchase – because you can now buy factory-fresh parts for your Corolla AE86, straight from Toyota.
That’s right kids, through its captive motorsport brand, Gazoo Racing, Toyota is reproducing spare parts for the Corolla Levin Sprinter Trueno “AE86” as part of the GR Heritage Parts Project. The project reproduces new original parts that have been discontinued and sells them as genuine parts with a standard new part warranty, “ in order to support customers who wish to continue driving older vehicles that are full of memories and that they truly love.”
All kidding aside, you have to admit that the concept of a Heritage Parts program is great, even if the Initial D AE86 isn’t exactly your cuppa – but it sort of begs the question, what other new-age classics might be worthy of a heritage program? I’m glad you asked!
Today’s Rare Ride is one of just nine Alfa Romeo TZ3s built in 2010 by Zagato. Priced at over $1 million at the time, every example was immediately sold to a collector who put it in an alarmed garage somewhere warm and sunny, and then didn’t drive it.
However, underneath the fanciful Zagato bodywork was a platform few million-dollar class collectors covet for their garage.
That figure grows to two today with the lovely, stylish, and luxurious 164.
Following up on my previous review of the 2020 BMW X5 M Competition, I’ve got another luxurious “sporty” crossover in my crosshairs. Today’s target: The 2020 Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio.
Except this one has at least some Italian heritage, instead of German. Trading schnitzel for stringozzi, so to speak.
The Alfa Romeo 4C Spider is at the end of the road in the U.S. Unlike some cases, in which models are dropped with little fanfare, FCA has decided to send the 4C out in style with the roll out of the 4C Spider 33 Stradale Tributo, a salute to the ’67 Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale.
Rare Rides has featured many an Alfa Romeo in past editions, but none as new as today’s 8C. With its very striking design, a limited manufacturing run, and a very high price when new, the low-slung coupe was instantly rare. A daring coupe from a small Italian manufacturer.
The exhaust note will suck you in. If you, like most readers of this fine publication, have a healthy appreciation for all things mechanical, you cannot help but be charmed by the baritone rasp of this twin-turbocharged V6.
I know that I was.
Thus, an impromptu road trip to Pittsburgh in the 2019 Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio naturally brought me through the Fort Pitt tunnel into the city. Yes, I opened the windows, twisted the drive mode selector to Race, and slapped the paddle shifter down a couple of cogs just to hear that exhaust echo among those tile-lined walls.
We’re talking one of those 1950s Leave It To Beaver-type families, not those downsized 1980s-onward broods. Yes, the range-topping utility vehicle under development by Fiat Chrysler’s sporty Alfa Romeo division will likely boast three rows and seven seats, according to UK publication Autocar.
It’s far removed from the diminutive Alfas of yesteryear, such as the 2000 GT Veloce driven by the titular character in Shaft In Africa, but it’s necessary to seduce the space-hungry American market. It’s also just one of several new products expected to be announced by FCA boss Sergio Marchionne next month.
Alfa Romeo fans, whose passion was hardly diminished by reports of early Giulia reliability issues, will probably be pleased to hear there may be fewer doors and more power coming to the Italian sports model. We’ve heard rumors of a two-door before, but this one adds some extra detail.
According to Autocar, the upcoming Giulia variant adopts more than just a coupe bodystyle. Quicker launches and top-end speed bursts will come by way of a energy recovery system that adds extra muscle to the existing 2.0-liter four-cylinder and 2.9-liter V6.
We may be giving Europeans more credit for pioneering fashion than they deserve. Dress shoes without socks? The Italians started that heinous trend and it’s unforgivable. But Italy also gave us Alfa Romeo, a brand that persists solely because of the warm feeling it evokes in a specific subset of the motoring population. Someone who owns an Alfa probably cares about style and they’ll happily discuss the merits of being fashionable while wrapped in designer clothing.
That’s why we were surprised when the brand introduced black editions of the Giulia and Stelvio at the New York International Auto Show. Officially called “Nero Edizione,” the appearance package removes every square centimeter of shiny trim and replaces it with a flat black alternative. While the murdering out of cars feels distinctly American, it isn’t. The trend spilled over into nearly every automaker with a global footprint and is now appearing in showrooms worldwide.
Still, it feels more than a little odd for Alfa to chase the de-chromed trend this late in the game.
Italian design firm Zagato has a way with making things red and black — and extra angular. Why, just look at what they did to a standard Nissan Leopard in turning it into the Stelvio. And while the Stelvio’s integrated fender mirrors and overall level of crazy isn’t to everyone’s taste, general favor has always fallen upon Alfa Romeo’s ’90s Zagato model, the SZ.
Come and have a look.
There’s going to be a lot less Italian in Reid Bigland’s diet going forward, after Fiat Chrysler Automobiles removed the Alfa Romeo and Maserati portfolios from the high-ranking executive’s oversight. It’s all part of a broader raft of management changes announced today.
Bigland, quite a star in FCA’s upper echelon, will continue in his existing role as head of U.S. sales and president and CEO of FCA Canada. The executive had the two Italian luxury brands dropped in his lap back in May 2016. Earlier in his career, he headed up the Dodge and Ram brands.
Other changes are afoot as FCA attempts to give Alfa and Maserati the full-time guardian the two brands need in order to thrive.
In our last Rare Rides entry we had a look at the oddball little BMW Freeclimber, a Daihatsu Rugger as edited by Italian design firm Bertone. Small SUVs has never been Bertone’s forte, however. No, the most well-known Bertone designs fall into the sports coupe category.
And here’s a prime example — the Alfa Romeo Montreal.
Many years of competing in demolition derbies taught me many things, such as the value of not looking over my shoulder while reversing into someone at a high rate of speed and the importance of a good neck brace. I also learned that while one can substitute other liquids for transmission fluid, braking systems don’t play well with any pollutant that’s not designed to be in there.
Alfa Romeo has also discovered this fact, and is now recalling a total of 307 Giulia sedans and Stelvio crossovers from the 2018 model year for potentially contaminated brake fluid.
More than a few automotive publications have taken possession of an Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio for a loan or test, only to have the car sidelined by mechanical or electrical gremlins of one kind of another.
So it was with some trepidation that I took the keys to a Giulia immediately after returning a Stelvio to my local press-fleet driver. I’d spent a week with one Alfa and had no problems; could I do it twice? Or would I be making the “uhhh lots of warning lights are on, please advise” call to the fleet manager?
A long-running stereotype of Italian cars is that they’re fun to drive and sexy in style, but also flawed and expensive. Not to mention unreliable – and expensive to repair.
Allow me to extend that stereotype to an SUV of Italian descent, the 2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio.
At first glance, this compact luxury crossover is one of the best-looking out there, one of the few that’s actually attractive to my eye. After a week with it, my opinion of its looks remained the same – it’s a head turner.
I’m not the only one who thinks so. I was picking up lunch at a chain fast-food joint in a local strip mall and a gaggle of teenaged dudes went gaga over the Stelvio. I guess today’s youth have different cars postered on their bedroom wall than I did.
Alfa Romeo is on track to sell between 130,000 and 140,000 vehicles around the globe in calendar year 2017, a far cry from the 170,000-unit performance Sergio Marchionne expected Alfa to put together.
U.S. sales remain predictably low by the standards of rival brands but are rising quickly now that the Stelvio SUV is in action. But on the other side of the Pacific, new rules that limit automobile manufacturers from forcing dealers to accept stock, Automotive News Europe reports, has sorely limited sales in China. Thus, rather than the 2,666 Alfa Romeo Stelvios shipped to China in July, only 227 landed in China in August.
The result? Alfa Romeo is cutting back production of the Stelvio and Giulia in Cassino, Italy.
My Dodge Dart awareness is not what it should be. I’m not fully up to speed on the Dodge Darts of yore. Despite my parents’ ownership of a Dart, the 1960-1976 period was not an era in which I was a sentient being.
As for the newer Alfa Romeo Giulietta-based Darts, I’m not fully on board with America’s rejection of the car. By the end of its second full year, nearly 200,000 Dodge Darts had been sold. Sales increased yet again in 2015. But without factory support, real demand was rather limited. Only 43,402 Darts were sold in the United States in 2016, the year Dart production came to a premature end.
Man, I loved that car. Oh, I don’t mean the way it drove, and certainly not the way it shifted. I’m not talking about interior packaging or its engine lineup or its interior quality. Whatever. Pfft. Who cares. I just genuinely liked the way it looked: the proudly Dodge front end, those completely wheel-filled arches, and especially that distinctive rear end.
I’m therefore pleased to see Audi resurrecting that look for the fourth-generation 2018 Audi A8, the brand’s flagship sedan.
So, a Chinese automobile manufacturer, Great Wall Motors, would totally love it if Fiat Chrysler Automobiles flung the Jeep brand its way. Who wouldn’t? In the mid-1980s, Jeep was the ruby in AMC’s crown, and its new (and highly profitable) Cherokee line had Chrysler Corporation chairman Lee Iacocca salivating at the thought of where he could take the brand if given the chance.
Three decades later and Jeep is FCA’s biggest asset, not just due to current volume, but future volume in untapped markets. CEO Sergio Marchionne wants people the world over to drop what they’re doing and buy a Jeep. Having global Jeep models that are popular in numerous regions would act as a hedge against trouble in, say, North America, where its Chrysler, Dodge and Fiat brands aren’t exactly setting sales charts on fire.
Too big to spin off? Perhaps, but other brands in the FCA fold aren’t nearly as indispensable. With no corporate sugar daddy waiting in the wings with a checkbook, the automaker is reportedly considering spinning off a couple of brands, a new report claims.
MSRPs aren’t meaningless.
Okay, sometimes they’re meaningless. The manufacturer’s suggested retail price — dealer may sell for less, or more — is just one element of a new vehicle acquisition’s true cost. For most vehicles, the MSRP is just the starting point for negotiations, which won’t truly begin until you have a clear idea of the automaker’s incentive load. Employee pricing. Anniversary bonus. Labor Day credits. Red tag deals. Summer clear out. Memorial Day rebates. July 4th blowouts.
Then there’s the interest rate equation, which will change based on credit, term, and numerous other factors. Next, apply unappetizing dealer fees. And now, if you’re considering leasing, throw another whole set of numbers into this kettle of fish.
Out comes a lease payment for the $73,595 2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio that’s nearly double the cost of a BMW M3; a lease payment 77-percent higher than on the Cadillac CTS-V, even though the CTS-V’s MSRP is 17-percent higher.
We urge you: please do not lease an Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio until terms change.
Critics love the Alfa Romeo Giulia.
And they hate it.
American luxury car buyers, however, are increasingly interested. The Alfa Romeo Giulia lineup has been available since the tail end of 2016. And every month, right through the spring and into the summer, stories of breakdowns and limp-home modes and on-track failures had no apparent impact on increased demand.
July 2017 was the Alfa Romeo Giulia’s best month on the U.S. market to date.
There’s a series of curves on my route home that can be an absolute joy when traffic is minimal. Beyond a left-hand kink over a slight rise, the road drops away at least fifty feet in a sweeping right curve and flicks back left at the bottom of the hill to cross a river. It’s not much – maybe a quarter of a mile – but for a few moments, I forget the last nine hours spent driving a desk.
While my usual vehicle for this road is my trusty minivan, a proper driver’s car makes the route much more rewarding. Beyond making me disregard the stress of a day at the office, a good drive can make me briefly ignore the various quirks and idiosyncrasies of the car beneath me.
Quirks and idiosyncrasies — in roughly equal measure with solid driving dynamics — have been the hallmarks of virtually every Alfa Romeo since at least the Truman administration, meaning the 2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Ti has plenty of heritage to live up to. Now that Chrysler is once again part of the Alfa Romeo parentage, will the Imported From Detroit vibe reflect in this imported sports sedan? Or will the Giulia remain, for better or worse, a proper Italian?
We can’t call it The Big Mo. Medium Mo might also be too strong a term.
But Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ Alfa Romeo division is beginning to pick up a measure of Giulia sales momentum in the United States. And with the launch of the Alfa Romeo Stelvio, Alfa’s first utility vehicle, occurring now, we should expect to see major improvements in the third and fourth-quarter of 2017.
But this [s]big[/s] [s]medium[/s] modest momentum comes as high-profile Alfa Romeo Giulias, the Giulias that land in the hands of the people who tell the world about the Giulia, fail with shocking regularity.
The latest failure? Last night, in the hands of a Jalopnik crew that lived to tell the tale.
With contributions by Sebastien Bell and Sam McEachern
Mechanics have made their last-minute checks, drivers circulate sur la piste managing tire and brake temperatures, engineers confirm strategies; cars stage on the starting grid, the dissonant cacophony of twenty 1.6-liter V6 hybrid Formula 1 engines spooling reverberates through the grandstands as five red lights illuminate sequentially…
Hosted on Montreal’s Île Notre-Dame since 1978, the Grand Prix Du Canada has always been a special place for the Formula 1 paddock. For decades, drivers have loved the city’s vibrating atmosphere and unbridled passion for the sport, but what they really love is the circuit’s proximity to a devilish downtown core drowning in alcohol and impeccably dressed women.
Why do you think we like it?
The Alfa Romeo brand is an odd duck, and not just because of its “exotic” status or its on-again, off-again history in the United States. Italian car fans love it. Design enthusiasts drool over it. Performance enthusiasts and sports sedan traditionalists pine for a finely balanced, twin-turbocharged Giulia Quadrifoglio. Concerned friends warn them that other, perhaps safer options exist. Money lenders with soft hearts try to raise concerns about reliability.
Love it or fear it, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has high hopes for the Alfa brand in the U.S. but, unlike FCA boss Sergio Marchionne, top American brass are hesitant to put a number to their hopes. For now, Alfa remains a brand without numerical expectations. And that’s the reason you won’t find incentives heaped on Alfa models in the near future.
Alfa Romeo’s long-awaited Giulia sports sedan is finally trickling down to U.S. buyers in larger numbers and a performance-oriented Stelvio SUV should arrive this summer. You’d think cautious optimism for the re-introduced brand would be the order of the day. Instead, there’s massive optimism coming from Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Stergio Marchionne and nothing but caution from industry analysts.
There’s also plenty of disagreement on how well the two vehicles will sell, and reality is leaning increasingly towards the analysts.
What will Alfa Romeo’s next vehicle be? According to Autocar, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Alfa Romeo, and Alfa boss Reid Bigland have not yet made a decision about what the segment in which the next Alfa Romeo will compete.
The Mito and Giulietta will remain in Alfa Romeo’s lineup indefinitely despite their limited appeal. Timing for their replacements, which Alfa says must have global appeal, is unknown.
Alfa Romeo’s next vehicle, therefore, will likely be an SUV, Bigland told Autocar.
But bigger than the Stelvio? Or smaller?
Somehow, Jalopnik's 2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio Didn't Break Down, But It Sure Wasn't Exactly Perfect
Jalopnik published its review of the 2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio (man, Quadrifoglio takes forever to type) and the world discovered that Jalopnik’s Giulia did not require a tow truck.
That sounds terribly sarcastic, but we wouldn’t be compelled to point out the relative reliability of Jalopnik’s Giulia Quadrifoglio (my goodness, Quadrifoglio takes forever to type) if Giulias hadn’t failed so miserably at other prominent publications in the recent past.
Jalopnik’s 2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio didn’t struggle with remote starts, spend time getting fixed at a dealer, stall while parking, or die in traffic. Bless its thumping Italian heart. But Jalopnik’s Giulia Quadrifoglio was far from perfect. Editor-in-chief Patrick George says he doesn’t care: “I am willing to do what the Alfisti have done for decades and chalk up most of its flaws to that thing that is so elusive in modern cars: character.”
But George told me yesterday, “It’s not weirdo enthusiasts like me that Alfa Romeo has to convince. It’s normal folks who might otherwise buy a BMW or a Lexus.”
“And they’re not going to put up with these issues.”
In the latest episode of Consumer Reports’ Talking Cars YouTube show, hosts Jon Linkov, Gabe Shenhar, and Mike Monticello discussed the persistence with which their bought-and-paid for 2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Ti has visited the dealer.
Only recently purchased by Consumer Reports’ undercover team, the new Alfa Romeo Giulia has hardly been able to undergo Consumer Reports’ testing.
“It’s a sexy car,” Shenhar says in introducing the new Alfa. “It has a really storied brand name. As compelling as it might look,” Shenhar says, introducing the new Alfa,”I don’t know if I’m ready to send anyone to buy this car.”
“It’s been back to the dealer about three times since we bought it.”
Although there are plans in the works, we have not yet tested the new 2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia. Not in base, Ti, or Quadrifoglio guise.
But in a four-car comparison test recently conducted by Car And Driver, the Alfa Romeo Quadrifoglio finished on top, besting the 2017 Mercedes-AMG C63 S (yes, it’s a Mercedes-AMG, apparently not a Mercedes-Benz), the Competition-packed 2017 BMW M3, and the 2017 Cadillac ATS-V.
Of course, Car And Driver doesn’t issue the final verdict. Even TTAC doesn’t issue the final verdict. TTAC’s B&B doesn’t have the last say, either. You, oh sports sedan buyer who wouldn’t look twice at a Lexus NX300h, possess the money that will determine whether the 2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio is the best sports sedan on sale today.
Nevertheless, let’s take Car And Driver’s word for it, if only for a moment. Let’s believe that the 2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio is the best sports sedan in America right now.
Is being the best good enough for the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio to earn your money? Because, as you’d expect, the Giulia that won Car And Driver’s comparison test broke down.
There’s been no shortage of digital ink spilled over the impending return of Alfa Romeo to North American shores, with declarations of a grand return being touted all the way back in 2000 when the company entered into a partnership with General Motors. Yes, General Motors.
Now, of course, we know Alfa’s part in Sergio’s grand plan for the House of FCA. Since the introduction of the sinewy Giulia, the hot and unpronounceable Quadrifoglio has gotten all the press. How does a base Giulia stack up at $37,995?
At least 20 Fiat and Alfa Romeo dealers in California have filed protests against Fiat Chrysler Automobiles after the manufacturer altered franchise agreements last December. Dealers objected to the changes, claiming it placed the struggling brands at a further disadvantage.
While the grievances vary between dealers, the protests revolve around a few key issues. FCA’s obligation to provide vehicles to the franchisees, the legal standard dealers must meet to sell those units, alterations to the definition of parts or accessories and how that might enable third-party distributors, and the constantly changing language surrounding dealer responsibilities were all common themes among the filed complaints.
Alfa Romeo has bragged that it will have nine new cars on the market by 2021 ever since brand boss and arm-day workout expert Reid Bigland announced a plan to “ absolutely to go toe to toe with the Germans.”
A big part of that plan included a Giulia Sport Wagon to compete with the Deutsche estate cars. Apparently, this was a big fat lie and Bigland should meet me in the parking lot after school because Alfredo Altavilla, Fiat Chrysler’s CEO for Europe, Africa and Middle East, now says the model is off the table.
“We have decided not to make a Giulia Sport Wagon,” Altavilla explained to journalists in Europe. “Do we really need it if the SUV Stelvio handles so well? Probably not. With our fine tuning, Stelvio can interest all those people who might have been interested [in the wagon].”
Sick of seeing Alfa Romeo Giulias everywhere you go? Fiat Chrysler Automobiles would love that to be the case, but the model is only just ramping up in the U.S. after its December introduction. January saw a whopping 70 sales, beating December’s 29 by a mile.
Positioned as a rear-drive alternative to BMW’s 3 and 4 Series, as well as other German competitors, the long-to-arrive Giulia’s American success is far from guaranteed, though its broad price range leaves plenty of room for new customers enticed by its Italian flair.
Alfa’s plan to cement its U.S. return includes launching nine new models over the next five years. According to one report, the next model coming down the pipe is a no-brainer.
FCA and Ferrari boss Sergio Marchionne said that he would love to see Alfa Romeo returning to the Formula 1 Championship with its own team, provided that they are never, ever as good as Scuderia Ferrari. Instead of being a genuine F1 contender, he imagines Alfa as the junior varsity team designed to condition future talent for its big-league brother.
“Alfa Romeo in F1 could become a fine breeding ground for young Italian drivers,” Marchionne said after announcing GP2’s Antonio Giovinazzi as Ferrari’s new third driver at the company’s annual Christmas media event. “For that very reason we are thinking about bringing it back, as our competitor, to racing, to Formula One. It’s important for Alfa to return.”
Alfa Romeo claimed the Giulia would start under $40,000, and the automaker has kept its promise.
It may be time to start getting cautiously optimistic about Alfa’s comeback, especially considering what the sedan offers for the money and where this price point places it in the market.
Though it may seem hard to believe, we’re only a month away from celebrating the 50th anniversary of the start of the Wedge Era in automotive designs.
To those of us who still think of the Countach as a sharp enough design to be considered cutting edge, this is a sad reality. Yet the prototype of what would become the 1980s poster child was first shown in a hard-to-conceptualize 1971.
The influence of the angle extended far beyond the Countach in the 1980s. It also started before the scissored doors opened on the stand in Geneva in 1971 and was seen in many more marques than just those wearing the Raging Bull. Even more impressive than its age is the reach of these designs, some of which are still being refined today. So, let’s take a look at some of the interesting and influential doorstop shapes and where they later found a home.
As the season for giving approaches, Alfa Romeo is saying it might gift its rear-drive Giorgio platform to other Fiat Chrysler vehicles.
Last week, at the Los Angeles Auto Show, Alfa’s Reid Bigland not-so humble bragged to journalists that the platform is so good it would actually be difficult not to share it across brands.
Automakers have an easy way of determining which new model is guaranteed to make the company money. If the answer to the simple question “Is it an SUV?” is a clear, definite “yes,” well, that’s a good enough indicator for most.
Alfa Romeo knows that in this day and age, not including an SUV in its lineup would be the kiss of death, hence the need for the 2018 Stelvio. Revealed in images on the eve of its Los Angeles Auto Show debut, the Stelvio borrows the face, platform and performance characteristics of its midsize sedan stablemate, the oft-delayed Giulia.
Sporting Italian lines that make vehicles built north of the Alps look frumpy and bureaucratic in comparison, Alfa Romeo also hopes the Stelvio temps buyers with what’s underneath its dress.
Human redwood and former Canadian junior hockey star Reid Bigland adds yet another set of responsibilities to his resume thanks to an executive shuffle at FCA.
Bigland replaces Harald Wester as CEO of both Alfa Romeo and Maserati brands effective immediately, though Wester retains his Chief Technology Officer position with the group. Both men will continue to sit on the Group Executive Council, which has increasingly insulated Sergio Marchionne from regional brand operations.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne on Wednesday said the automaker would rely more heavily on profitable Jeeps and Rams in North America and Europe to help its business remain profitable in other sagging areas and regions.
“We are not of the view that this industry is facing an impending demise,” Marchionne said before announcing FCA’s adjusted earnings of $1.78 billion in the fourth quarter.
Marchionne and CFO Richard Palmer said Jeep’s success in North America and Europe led the company last year and would be the “bedrock” for the automaker’s future. The automaker laid out specific plans to bring forward a Jeep pickup and Wagoneer, and let wither less-profitable models such as the Chrysler 200 and Dodge Dart.
Jeep Pickup, Jeep Compass and Jeep Renegade: All The Things We'll Probably Hear Tomorrow From Sergio
On Wednesday, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne will update investors on his long-term plans and fourth-quarter profits — namely, how many Jeeps it sold — during his scheduled earnings conference call.
It’s widely expected that Sergio will address the near-certainty that Jeep will build a pickup based on the Wrangler, as well as the future for the Jeep Compass that’ll likely survive from the Patriot/Compass twin billing, and Jeep’s potential to keep afloat fledgling FCA brands such as Maserati and Alfa Romeo.
Analysts say FCA’s ambitious target of $5 billion profit by 2018 would be almost unattainable at this point.
“‘Ambitious’ is not really an adequate word to describe it, ‘fantasyland’ might be more appropriate,” Bernstein’s Max Warburton told Automotive News.
Classic cars are the ultimate form of navel-gazing. And a car like the 1968 Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale is the ultimate nerdgasm.
The 33 Stradale was so limited that when it rolled off the production line, no one knew how to fix it. Its composed of equal parts of unobtainium and eludium. Cars like this are harder to find than unicorns humping a rainbow.
At $10 million it’s hard to think that it’s anything other than comically overpriced. But when it starts up and screams like that, it’s hard to think about anything at all.
Square-jawed linebacker and sometimes-Alfa chief Reid Bigland took the covers off the 2016 Alfa Romeo Giulia QV for the first time in North America on Tuesday.
The car, which has been delayed about six months, will boast 505 horsepower and a price tag in the “$70,000 range” when it goes on sale next year. According to Bigland, the Giulia QV’s 7:39 lap around the Nurburgring is the quickest for any sedan.
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.”
On Wednesday night, as the deadline for strike action came closer and closer, the United Auto Workers-Fiat Chrysler Automobiles National Bargaining Committee announced they had “secured significant gains” over the last proposed tentative agreement that was widely rejected by UAW membership.
Details on the new agreement were not published.
The new proposed agreement averts a strike — for now — and will be sent Friday to local union leaders that comprise the UAW National Chrysler Council for discussion and voting.
“We heard from our members, and went back to FCA to strengthen their contract,” said UAW President Dennis Williams early Thursday morning in a statement. “We’ve reached a proposed Tentative Agreement that I believe addresses our members’ principal concerns about their jobs and their futures. We have made real gains and I look forward to a full discussion of the terms with our membership.”
FCA acknowledged they reached a new proposed tentative agreement with the union, but declined to give specifics due to the pending vote by UAW members.
2016 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider
1.75-liter DOHC I-4, direct injection, turbocharged, CVVT (237 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm; 258 lbs-ft @ 2,200-4,250 rpm)
6-speed “Alfa TCT” dual-clutch automatic
24 city/34 highway/28 combined (EPA Rating, MPG)
28.1 (Observed, MPG)
Tested Options: Rosso Alfa Red paint, Fascia Stone Protector, HID Headlamps, Carbon Fibre Trim Kit, Convenience Package, Racing Exhaust, Red Calipers, 18/19 Inch Staggered Wheels, Leather Package,
* Prices include $1,595 destination charge.
Up ’til now, if you wanted an Italian, mid-engined, street-legal track roadster made out of exotic materials, you needed to be a one-percenter to afford one. But all that is changing with the relaunch of the “other Italian brand,” Alfa Romeo. For the price of a single black-market organ “donation” you can get your hands on the new 2016 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider. Unlike Alfa’s last car sold in America — the Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione — the 4C Spider is pronounceable, will be available in quantity, and is ostensibly attainable at $53,900 for the coupé and $63,900 for the rag top that we got our hands on.
Like the hardtop 4C, this exotic isn’t an enormous bruiser that’s as wide as Kansas, and it doesn’t have a V12. Instead Alfa opted for a small four-cylinder turbocharged engine and a serious dedication to lightweight construction. In some ways you might call this the Italian Lotus. Until we see the 2017 Alfa Romeo Guilia, FCA’s 3-Series fighter, the 4C and 4C Spider are spearheading the brand’s American reboot.
Is that good or bad?
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- Redapple2 C2 is the best. C3 next. Then C7 (looking at you jimII).
- Jeff S Vulpine--True the CAFE rules are for ICE.
- Gray I grew up in the era of Panther and Fox platforms. If only they developed a good looking two door Conti. The four doors became a cult in their own right. And kept the 351W as a top line option.
- Vulpine ABSOLUTELY YES!!! Bring back the TRUE compact trucks. The demand for them is far higher than the OEMs want to admit.
- Brn More likely, with Google having troubles, the money tree isn't as ripe as it once was and cutbacks are needed.I hope the overall industry continues to evolve. When I get the the point I can't easily drive, I would still appreciate the independence that autonomous vehicles can bring.