Marchionne focuses on development Alfa Romeo
During the usual press conference in Geneva Sergio Marchionne has stated that FCA is doing well and that they will be getting more and more opportunities to invest in development. ‘No bad news then’ said the CEO, as if he was trying to accentuate that there’s more reason for enthusiasm than negativism. The latter arose when FCA announced that Alfa Romeo’s range won’t be completed by 2018 as originally planned, but only by halfway 2020. FCA doesn’t need a partner, is what the man in black sweater now suddenly stated. Rumour had it that PSA was a possible partner, but no such words came out of Marchionne’s mouth. The Canadian-Italian was very open this time about the small delay for the Giulia. The CEO said that this had everything to do with perfecting the product and everything that comes with it; “Technically we’re capable of anything and we didn’t want to launch a product inferior to that of the German competition.”
Alfa Romeo’s return to F1 won’t happen in the first few years though. Bringing out the entire range successfully is the number one priority and only then there will be sufficient funds/time to focus on a return in the class of kings. The SUV is in full development and Alfa Romeo’s focus is on this forthcoming model now, with works already started in Cassino. All hopes for the championship in F1 are on Ferrari then. Marchionne stated that beating Mercedes will be tough as they’ve improved on their car of last year as well. But Ferrari’s new SF 16-H should be very competitive, even though it still needs some fine-tuning.
The Chrysler Pacifica shall be FCA’s very first plug-in hybrid in the USA, but there are no immediate plans to invest huge money in hybrids. Marchionne claimed that the margins are still too small for this technique to be profitable, which is why only Maserati and other upper-class brands of FCA will be offering the technique in the near future (besides the Pacifica of course). Marchionne has high hopes for the new Chrysler MPV on the North-American market.
When asked about a possible successor to the Fiat Punto Marchionne didn’t reveal anything. He claimed that all depends on the profitability of a product, but did admit that he’s had several strong discussions on the subject with his colleague Alfredo Altavilla. It seemed like the CEO once again hinted who will be his successor.