Alfa Romeo will become stand-alone company, sources say
Alfa Romeo 4C
TURIN, Italy -- Fiat-Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne will turn Alfa Romeo into a stand-alone company, part of his latest plan to revive the struggling brand, people familiar with the matter told Automotive News Europe.
Alfa Romeo will have a publicly disclosed profit and loss statement, the sources said.
"To make this new relaunch attempt into a credible business proposition, Marchionne needs to make Alfa's P&L clearly visible," one of the sources said.
The plan is crucial for Fiat dealers in the United States who expect to sell Alfa Romeo. U.S. Fiat dealers now sell only two small cars, the Fiat 500 and 500L.
Sources said Marchionne will announce Alfa Romeo's new status on May 6 when the company presents its five-year product and business plan in suburban Detroit. Marchionne declined to comment on the matter on April 11.
Turning Alfa Romeo into a global brand is a cornerstone of Marchionne's plan to bring Fiat's money-losing European automotive operations back into the black by middecade.
Alfa Romeo will relaunch with a new line of rear-wheel-drive vehicles, including an SUV to help the brand take on premium carmakers such as BMW, Automotive News Europe reported in December. The vehicles will start to hit the market in 2016. High-end versions will get Ferrari-developed engines.
Marchionne's new plan for Alfa Romeo is his fourth since he joined Fiat in June 2004.
Alfa Romeo has continued to wither as relaunch plans continually missed targets. Last year, Alfa Romeo's global deliveries fell 56 percent to 74,000 cars, a level not seen since the late 1960s.
Six new models are planned for Alfa Romeo, sources said. A compact SUV and mid-sized sedan will be assembled at Fiat's Cassino factory near Rome. A large sedan and a large SUV are planned for Fiat's Mirafiori plant in Turin. Alfa Romeo also plans a large coupe and a two-seat roadster that will be produced in Italy.
The top versions of these vehicles will have V-6 gasoline engines developed by Ferrari.
Alfa Romeo also will use in its future models the new Pratola Serra-built 1.75-liter four-cylinder turbocharged gasoline direct-injection unit that debuted in the limited-edition 4C coupe.
Diesel engines for Alfa Romeo will be built in Pratola Serra by VM Motori, a Fiat subsidiary in Italy, which builds engines for Maserati, Ram and Jeep.
Jennifer Clark contributed to this report
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