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“Our plan is to build the Giulia in the Mirafiori plant," in Turin, Italy, Marchionne said."
Pa-tooey!
Any car built by Fiat at the Mirafiori is a what? Do I need to tell you? It's a Fiat.
Look, I have loved me some Fiat for sure, but if Fiat builds a car in that plant for God sake just call it a Fiat.
 

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Nice find. I think that a lot of what Matthias Mueller says reflects the same basic sentiment that a lot of people on this board feel towards Alfa today. It almost seems like even Prosche would like a more viable competitor out of Alfa Romeo. Wow.
 

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This is the same Porsche that's no longer an independent company because of an ill-planned takeover bid resulting in their own takeover, eh? Yeah, I'm sure their execs are all brilliant :D

They want to buy Alfa. Of course they're going to say that they're the only thing that can save the brand. Take it with a grain of salt.
 

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People who love the sports car culture and its history understand the importance of Alfa Romeo in that culture and history. Mueller is only expressing the sentiments of any true sports car fan. The loss of any sports car marque is a blow to the entire sport. What if your favorite stick and ball sports league starting losing teams, you'd be pretty worried about the sport's future too. The loss of Jaguar, Aston Martin, Lotus, Lancia, etc should be felt as a loss to Alfa Romeo fans as well.
 

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I think we lost Alfa as a true sports car when FWD chassis crept in.....and let's face it, the Alfa platforms have been joint developments since the 90's anyway, so who really cares where it is built?
As long as the name and company exist, there is hope. It has to make money to survive.
I personally think that smaller, niche manufacturers can't survive in the current auto making climate, one driven by reduced costs of everything. Where a car platform has to service several export markets and be everything to everyone.
Making sports cars in an environment where reducing emissions and driving being an annoying chore to so many people, is a fool's errand frankly.
Anyone who makes sports cars these days MUST, no way around it, build a mundane family sedan as well to make money. Quirky, innovative, cool, does not sell in that market.
Yes, we're all car enthusiasts here and really enjoy driving, but ask yourself, how many like enthusiasts do you meet in your regular day? Everyone I know drives just because they have to and put as little into it as they can, just get from A to B without bouncing off anything and you're a good driver apparently!
Anyway, would be nice for Alfa to survive, but I dunno......
 

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People who love the sports car culture and its history understand the importance of Alfa Romeo in that culture and history. Mueller is only expressing the sentiments of any true sports car fan.
From an enthusiast standpoint, it makes a lot of sense to have a variety of sports car brands thrive because challenge and variety will always create ingenuity through competition.

But from an economical standpoint, if I were Porsche I would be very happy about the state Alfa Romeo is in right now. If I was in the market for a new car and this was 1969, I'd buy a GTV over a 911 in a heartbeat. In 2011, I'd take a 911 over anything Alfa has in its stable.

Making sports cars in an environment where reducing emissions and driving being an annoying chore to so many people, is a fool's errand frankly.
Anyone who makes sports cars these days MUST, no way around it, build a mundane family sedan as well to make money.
Isn't that what Fiat is suppose to be for???
 

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But from an economical standpoint, if I were Porsche I would be very happy about the state Alfa Romeo is in right now.
Not if you felt that the demise of Alfa was just the beginning of the demise of the sports car market you wouldn't!
 

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It might not be for sale but Porsche's chief executive predicts that the brand "will die" if Fiat keeps up the bad work they've done at managing the brand over the years.

Porsche boss rebukes Fiat on Alfa Romeo
While I believe that Fiat has wrecked both Lancia and Alfa, take the Porsche bosses comments with a grain of salt. If VW bought Alfa, their plan would be to rebrand the Seat cars as Alfa's. So instead of being re-badged Fiats, they would be rebadged's VWs. Not a big improvement.

Alfa's best chance at survival was when Ford came close to buying them out in the 80's. The brand is toast now.
 

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Not if you felt that the demise of Alfa was just the beginning of the demise of the sports car market you wouldn't!
Your point is well taken and perhaps there is some truth to it. But, honestly, I don't think that Alfa's demise over the last two decades has anything to do with the sports car market overall.

As I recall, Alfa's demise began just before the resurgence of the global sports car boom that began with the Mazda Miata (MX-5) in the very late 80's. While Alfa switched to front-wheel-drive platforms for all of it's sports cars, other autos such as the Mazda Miata, BMW Z4, and Porsche Boxster were introduced to the market with much success and in rear-wheel-drive guise to boot. All Alfa had going for it through those years was the Arese engines that, despite brand loyalties across the board, every sports car enthusiast could agree on as a quality piece of work. Now Alfa doesn't even have that anymore.

This, in my opinion, has everything to do with Fiat and its (poor) decisions on how to develop (or de-develop) that Alfa brand. They really don't have anything going for them at all. Sergio Marchionne has gotten a lot recent praise in the press for what seems to be a plan for success for all of Fiat's newly acquired American brands but there is very little he has done for Alfa Romeo except degenerate the brand so that it's new models only serve to cannibalize the sales for cars that Fiat already makes under its own namesake.

Like Matthias Mueller, I too do not understand what Fiat is doing. But I'd be happy to hear if someone wants to try to explain it to me.

And if Alfa fails tomorrow, I'd still wager that brands like BMW and Porsche would still continue to be a growing success in the market for some time to come.

Excuse me, btw, for the relatively long rant. :eek::eek:
 

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Excuse me, btw, for the relatively long rant.
No, no, it's a discussion board so let's discuss. :)

I agree with what you say about Fiat's treatment of Alfa Romeo.

I think we only disagree on the future of the sports car market. I am not sanguine on this point for many reasons foremost of which is that no pure sports car company can survive unless they sell 4-door sedans and/or SUVs. Sports cars are clearly a loss maker for most (all?) car companies. Even Lotus is showing large vehicles at auto shows in an attempt to bolster their bottom line. They (apparently) can't be a financial success selling only Elises/Exiges even with engines developed by another company (Toyota).
 

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While I believe that Fiat has wrecked both Lancia and Alfa, take the Porsche bosses comments with a grain of salt. If VW bought Alfa, their plan would be to rebrand the Seat cars as Alfa's. So instead of being re-badged Fiats, they would be rebadged's VWs. Not a big improvement.
It might be a BIG improvement to some people. Lots of fans of the hideous Mito and a sub-$20k Alfa in the stable would make a lot people on this board happy. I've read their posts. Liking the Mito tells me they want an economy car with an Alfa badge so the Nuovo Alfa 500 fits just fine and dandy with em. Screw rwd and anything resembling the Arese engine. It's all about mpgs, resale, and low insurance costs. Hahaha.

Then they jump on board with the choir here and say they hate the way Fiat runs Alfa Romeo. Totally weird.

At this rate I wonder what the second gen Mito will look like. I gotta learn to love that thing since it looks like we won't be seeing a gtv, spider, or proper second gen 156 (w rwd) anytime soon.

@ Topic: I guess Alfa has no good option going for it no matter who owns em. I think the only logical thing for Fiat to do is keep the brand but actually try to build real Alfa Romeos for once in their life. Not an easy thing to do for Fiat, apparently.
 

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For the popular market segment consisting of around sedans with an engine capacity of around 2 liters, today or in the last few years, I don't think anything comes close to the CL7 Honda Accord Euro R.

Can an E90 320si match it? About 50 bhp short I am afraid. It doesn't look all that great either. The Accord looks a lot better to boot (pun, the rear end bears some resemblance to the 156).

This FWD vs RWD issue is probably only applicable to higher end sports cars. For the most popular classes in the consumer market, it doesn't mean much, just bragging rights.

Since the 1970s, Alfa has mostly been in the consumer segment anyway. Their cars weren't much worse from other European brands, they just needed to pay more attention to QC.

The thing I don't understand is why have they not had a good grip on QA/QC since the 70's?
 

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It seems that in order to save money short term (for the company, not the customer) they end up buying lower cost/capable components to keep the initial price down. This of course costs the customer more in the long run. Also, since the factory knows there will likely be more component failures down the road, they cannot offer long term warranties as some other do. That is my take on it anyway.
 

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Marchionne called the Jeep Commander "unfit for human consumption" in this article. He admitted that even though some units were moved, he was uncertain as to why people bought them in the first place.

Maybe the reason why he has cancelled or held off on development for new Alfa models (Spider, Gtv, 166 replacement) is due to the fact that they too were "unfit for human consumption." You can look at his refusal to sell Alfa Romeo to competitors while axing certain benchmark products as an example of his own hopeful notion that Alfa can be saved and done right for Fiat. Finally.

I'm not saying that's necessarily what I believe but it's an angle that would be a pleasant surprise if it happened.

Ironically, I hailed Fiat's acquisition of Chrysler as a sign that resources for Alfa's renaissance might be fruitful and that Fiat would return the brand to America in glory (the 300 architecture could be made to fit the replacement for the 166 into something acceptable, albeit, not perfect). But to counter the hopeful scenario above, it could also be argued that in the chaos of the Chrysler acquisition, Alfa Romeo itself may have been forgotten by Fiat altogether.

I was just on the official Alfa Romeo homepage (English version) by the way, and it leads the viewer to believe that there are ten models available from the automaker in 2011 and that is about 80% untrue.
 

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They gotta build a car that people will want to buy, plain and simple. The models that were canceled were probably just gonna be more of the same stuff Alfa had been losing money on for 10 years. Marchionne is a savy, business-minded dude. Fiat probably makes more money with less Alfa's sold to the public.

I just read that in 2010, Alfa sold about 350 cars in South Africa across 18 dealerships. They had three models available there (Gt, 159. Mito). That's less cars than what they sold in North America in 1995 with only one model (164). Pathetic.

There's nothing left to do with this brand unless Fiat gives it a full-blown renaissance. And by "renaissance" I mean no more half-a$$ed Fiat engines and fwd.

We drive: Alfa Romeo Giulietta - Latest Launches - IOL | Breaking News | South Africa News | World News | Sport | Business | Entertainment | IOL.co.za
 

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Alfa/Fiat/Fi-Schmee-at

Ramblings

Sergio Macaroni is certainly a brilliant human being to get into the position where he is. But to me, despite the brilliance of Ferrari, the following video symbolizes the Italians attitude towards Alfa Romeo


Bozo's running a beautiful marquee off the road into the ground. Think about it, Enzo left Alfa Romeo, now Ferrari\Fiat symbolically has the last laugh, running the Alfa Romeo brand and uniqueness off the road , as GM has run many brands and itself into the ground. The rich, truly rich, will never let Ferrari get run into the ground as Alfa has been.

For many years we have seen typical Italian flair for bombastic remarks. Next year, just wait until next year, mi amor. I will return next year!!! Ha, ha. I for one am happy with my very old, but exciting cars from some of the glory days of Alfa Romeo. My roundtails still get admiration and big wide grins, as I'm sure GTV's and Supers do. AND STILL FUN TO DRIVE!

I think the German's "get it." I just bought a 6000 GCWR+ diesel Touareg for tax reasons. Americans don't get it. The self-serving running our POOR country think they are so rich as to keep borrowing and spending and giving away everything. I think the Germans protect their intellectual property, future, and bank accounts for the citizens. The smart people running our country, the uber-rich, I'm sure have diversified out of this country as those of us, 99%+ who can't, suffer the consequences of spendthrift, hopelessly watching from the sidelines.

I said almost 6 years ago that Alfa wasn't coming back (except of course for the super-duper-rich, the 8c).
 

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Today's news:

In comments following his speech, Marchionne put to rest rumors that it might sell its Alfa Romeo brand to Volkswagen.

"As long as I am CEO of Chrysler and Fiat, Mr. (Volkswagen Chairman Ferdinand) Piech will never have Alfa Romeo," Marchionne said.
 
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