After Ferrari helped Alfa Romeo with the development of the Giorgio platform underpinning the Giulia and Stelvio, the higher-ups at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles declared all high and mighty that the best is yet to come. The Capital Markets Day 2018 was the event where Alfa Romeo promised to follow up with the 600-horsepower GTV and 800-horsepower 8C, yet neither will happen as a result of the merger with Groupe PSA.
At the Q3 2019 Results presentation, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles listed Alfa Romeo’s current portfolio as the Giulietta compact hatchback, Giulia sedan, and Stelvio crossover. So far so good, but what happened to the 4C mid-engined sports car? The most worrying aspect of the presentation is the planned portfolio, which lists the Giulia, Stelvio, and two utility vehicles.
That’s right, ladies and gents; no more GTV and 8C for you!
The compact crossover will be the first to arrive in 2021 with a plug-in hybrid option while the B-UV is expected in 2022 with subcompact proportions and an all-electric variant. How does FCA explain this change? As it happens, the brand will “focus on current market strengths with reduced global reach and overlap with other group brands.” Yeah, right…
Italian media were reporting two weeks ago that Alfa Romeo could walk out of their sponsorship with Sauber F1 at the end of 2020, and we wouldn’t be surprised if that were to be proven true. The Italians are bleeding money with each and every passing day, both on the race track and in the showroom, and Fiat Chrysler isn’t willing to pour more resources into a failing brand. Honda has been rumored to partner up with Sauber if things go awry with Alfa Romeo, translating to three Honda-powered teams for 2021.
In terms of sales, Alfa Romeo’s global volume increased by 12.6 percent in 2018 to 122,533 vehicles. The problem with this growth is that it’s too small to cover the expenses of the Giorgio platform and Formula 1 involvement. Nearly 20 percent of the brand’s sales are distributed within the American region, and that’s not nearly enough to keep Alfa Romeo afloat.
Choosing to drop the GTV and 8C for the B-UV and C-UV is the best scenario that Alfa Romeo could’ve come up with, and with the help of Groupe PSA, chances are that the financial aspect will improve in the coming years. Speaking of which, the Opel and Vauxhall brands that were once losing money under General Motors have turned to profit thanks to Groupe PSA.
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