• Mar 2, 2011

Alfa Romeo
builds some really good-looking rides, but that apparently hasn't translated into profits for Fiat. In a recent interview with Forbes, Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne reportedly called the Italian brand a "money loser," and sales of the marque have consistently underwhelmed. But while Fiat has worked hard to rehab Alfa Romeo to no apparent avail, Volkswagen Chairman Ferdinand Piech feels his people can do better.

Reuters reports that Piech declared at the Geneva Motor Show that VW could raise Alfa sales from about 100,000 units per year to 400,000 or more in a scant five years. The boasting by Piech may seem more than a bit cocky, but that confidence jibes well with VW's bold proclamations that it will become the largest automaker on earth by 2018.

So what prompted Piech to announce to the world that VW could sell more Alfas than Fiat? We have no idea, and Marchionne has shown little public interest in selling the brand in the past. VW is obviously interested in buying Italy's sweetheart, though, and the German automaker likely has the cash and can take a liability off Fiat's books.

[Source: Reuters | Image: Nigel Treblin/AFP/Getty]


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 34 Comments
      • 3 Years Ago
      .....AND INCREASE EIGHTFOLD AS RE-BODIED DODGES AND CHRYSLERS.

      Sorry VW, no sale!
      • 3 Years Ago
      It appears that VW is turning into the Old GM and Old Ford with too many brands to manage.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Well, it is definitely following in the poor quality footsteps those 2 had.
      • 3 Years Ago
      While he is probably right on the numbers, if Alfa Romeo were under VW's management it would probably disappoint in terms of styling and become just another Seat or Skoda. I'm not saying those vehicles are either bad or ugly, because they sure aren't, but to me they lack the excitement that I expect from Alfa Romeo.
      While Alfa Romeo could benefit from VW's extensive portfolio, I'm afraid it would never be given the importance Audi has inside the group. VW is kind of successful in marketing all the different brands they have, but there is a point where too much is too much.
        • 3 Years Ago
        VW bought Italdesign Giugiaro not long ago , the design of the cars wouldn't be a problem, just like Lambo kept its Italian design and Bentley its British looks , i'm sure they will keep Alfa looking Italian too.
        • 3 Years Ago
        I couldn't agree more.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Alfa + VW = even more gremlins to experience, yay!
      • 3 Years Ago
      That's all well and good but VW first has to raise it's quality and long-term reliability to levels once associated with the Japanese. I don't see how VW is going to become No. 1 with high maintenance/ownership costs. Furthermore, In NA at-least, they are hampered by a dealer network that is at best hit or miss.
      • 3 Years Ago
      This guy is Darth Vadar. I'm seriously starting to dislike him.

      Alfa would lose its appeal to me if it was owned by VW.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Now there's a reason why the Giugiaro designed VW Tex looks so similar to the Giugiaro Alfa Brera. An intentional shot across the bow?
      • 3 Years Ago
      Of course the Piech thinks thinks the germans could build better Italian cars than the Italians because, well, ... they're germans. Just ask them. :P


      It would be foolish of Fiat to sell Alfa. The Alfa brand is their best shot at setting themselves apart from the crowd in North America.
      • 3 Years Ago
      The latest Alfa's look great! What they need is to increase their marketing, but saying that Piech may have just given them the best Marketing of all announcing major interest from VW is a big complement. I wish I bought some Alfa stock before he said that to Geneva!
      • 3 Years Ago
      More Piech deranged narcissism...like his insistence that Phaeton must sell in the U.S. "VE VILL Rule ZEE Vorld"
      • 3 Years Ago
      VW would, of course, commoditize Alfas to get them there. They would be based on VW chassis w/VW motors, and all controversial styling would go for a more staid, widely tolerated look.

      Fiat could raise Alfa sales dramatically if they just offered them in more places.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Which is what they intend to do. For years and years Fiat has promised to bring Alfa Romeo back to the USA, but they constantly delay those plans.

        Fiat's deal with Chrysler caused the last delay in those plans, but at the same time gave Alfa Romeo more chances to be successful in its comeback (the established dealer network is a great start). Through Chrysler, this time Fiat actually has good chances of bringing AR back to the USA. I hope Marchionne can resist the money Piech is trying to throw at him.
      • 3 Years Ago
      I can't believe nobody's taken the keys away from that megalomaniac Piech yet.
        • 3 Years Ago
        What VW needs is to own yet another car company? Piech needs to be put on anti-psychotic medication.
    • Load More Comments