We've been seeing reports of production being trimmed at the company's Grugliasco plant near Turin, Italy, for over a month now. But while earlier reports seemed to indicate the trouble was rooted in supplier issues, the latest suggests that slowing demand is the culprit.
According to Automotive News Europe, parent company Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has had to cut the number of shifts at Grugliasco (where the Ghibli and Quattroporte are produced) from 12 per week to 10.
"Fiat has told us that workers at the Grugliasco plant will be working for three weeks out of four up until July," union leader Federico Bellono told ANE. "The company is predicting production of about 30,000 to 35,000 cars at Grugliasco this year. I think it will be closer to 30,000."
Last year the plant produced 34,000 units, with the sedans accounting for the bulk of Maserati's sales. Of the 36,448 units the Modena-based automaker sold last year, 23,500 were Ghiblis and 9,500 were Quattroportes, with the GranTurismo accounting for just 3,500 units. That's up considerably from the total of 15,400 units it sold in 2013, but is still some ways off from the 50,000 it hopes to reach this year and the 75,000 it aims to achieve by 2018.
The arrival of the upcoming Levante crossover, as well as the Alfieri sports car and new GranTurismo, will surely help. But if Maserati is going to reach its ambitious sales targets, it's going to have to find more buyers for its core sedans.
Repeated requests made by Autoblog for comment from Maserati have yet to be answered, but we'll be sure to update you if and when relevant new information comes to light.