We’ve heard this story before. In fact, we’ve heard this story for years before. Alfa Romeo’s imminent arrival in the United States has been proclaimed for quite sometime. The Chrysler-Fiat partnership seems to finally be bringing that about however.
The U.S is now a key part of Alfa Romeo’s plans to increase global sales to 500,000 units by 2015. Currently, Alfa Romeo is a loss leader for Fiat as it hasn’t reached volumes that would make it profitable. Fiat is counting on new models, markets and increased sharing within the Fiat and Chrysler lineups to help the brand finally turn a profit.
With that in mind, Alfa Romeo needs to make a big push in the U.S. According toChief Executive Officer Sergio Marchionne has reportedly delayed that return until mid-2013.
Marchionne knows that to make a splash in the U.S, Alfa Romeo needs to not just offer decent products in its return, but ones that will cause people to take notice. As such, the Giulia is being delayed due to “design and manufacturing issues.”
More telling perhaps is the fact that Marchionne is unhappy with design proposals for the next-generation Chrysler 200 and Dodge Avenger sedans. The two new sedans will be all-new and are set to share platforms, engines and key components with the Giulia. Given the important of the mid-size sedan market, these new vehicles must be top-notch, unlike the current placeholder models.
So with that, it looks like Alfa Romeo’s U.S return is being pushed back yet again. This leaves Alfa Romeo’s global lineup with just three models: the MiTo, Giulietta and 159. In Europe, a new compact SUV based on the next-generation Jeep Compass platform is expected to be introduced at the end of the year.