Alfa and Maserati, the right marriage

Alfa Romeo and Maserati could have very good results if they worked together. The best example is the 4C. In the picture, a dedicated Giulietta with the stamp as the cortesy car for Maserati's owners.

Alfa Romeo and Maserati could have very good results if they worked together. The best example is the 4C. In the picture, a dedicated Giulietta with the stamp as the cortesy car for Maserati’s owners.

The future of Alfa Romeo should come along with Maserati’s. That’s my conclusion, and it is based on recent facts and other examples in the industry. Maserati has proven to do the right things in its goal of selling 50.000 units by 2015. The good mix of state-of-the-art cars with a terrific marketing campaign had allowed the brand to position as a real threat to German premiums even if it is a niche-product brand. The increasing awareness has been possible to exclusive and original off and online campaigns showing the new Ghibli and Quattroporte, and focusing on the values of the brand. Maserati had fantastic presentations in all of the recent auto shows while it has coherent with its product plan. With the arrival of the Levante, next year, the brand from Modena will continue attracting more fans and clients worldwide and will easily meet its target. All of this should be the best example for the other premium-want-to-be brand of the group: Alfa Romeo.

The 4C is built at Maserati's plant in Modena. Next step should include more models and their distribution and marketing.

The 4C is built at Maserati’s plant in Modena. Next step should include more models and their distribution and marketing.

Yes, the biscione brand needs products. The 4C is an awesome car, much better than D-Sport Germans, but Alfa needs more. While they arrive, they should get close to Maserati and start working together. There is a lot to do in everything related to the approach a premium brand should have regarding marketing and contact with clients. If Alfa Romeo wants to become a real premium choice things should change in the dealers, in the after sales service and the way it is promoted. It isn’t just a matter of product. The 4C is an excellent car that proves how far Alfa Romeo can go. A Cayman or a TT are quite behind in terms of technologic features and engine efficiency. The way Alfa has promoted it is another good example of how they should do for the next models. But I’m afraid that things would be much easier for the brand if all these efforts of becoming a premium brand, would be part of a common plan with Maserati.

A good positioning of the future Alfa Romeo and its closest cooperation with Maserati could be strong reasons for becoming a real threat to German premiums.

A good positioning of the future Alfa Romeo and its closest cooperation with Maserati could be strong reasons for becoming a real threat to German premiums.

And how to do it? first of all, future Alfas should be sold in common dealers with Maserati, and not beside Fiat or Lancia cars. The positioning of these brands is really different, because they are mainstream makers. For example, in USA the 4C will be sold in Maserati’s dealers and not in Fiat or Chrysler ones. The same should be done with future models in Europe. If there is a right positioning and high quality cars, then it wouldn’t be a problem for Maserati’s image, and it would earn from a higher volume of visitors in their dealers. Alfa Romeo must make use of the strong and increasing awareness of Maserati. They should share more components, technology and know-how. A marriage between them would certainly be a real threat to the 3 Germans, and would mean the real come back of Fiat into the premium segments.

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33 responses to “Alfa and Maserati, the right marriage

  1. Regarding the idea of selling Alfa through Maserati dealers, there is definitely some advantage in that — but are there enough dealers? How big is the Maserati dealer network in Europe?

    • That’s what they are going to do in USA with the 4C only. It doesn’t mean that it should be done in Europe, even if it is not a bad idea. The problem is the quantity.

      • There are only 12 dealers in the US … it’s maybe OK for Maserati or the 8C, marginal for the 4C, but it simply wouldn’t work for mainstream Alfas, I think.

  2. Actually Maserati is vs Porsche and not Audi, Mercedes, BMW.
    Against the faboulous 3 Alfa Romeo is the correct thing.
    Exor strategy in car manufacturing could be: 5.000 Ferrari, 50.000 Maserati and 500.000 Alfa Romeo, but you need to improve his quality.
    It has to be better than VW brand e near the faboulous 3, with a better price and a great design (this is difficult beacause Giugiaro now works only for VW Group)

  3. I agree the strategy of pairing Alfa Romeo with Maserati instead of selling through Fiat dealers is probably a better approach. I just can’t see Alfa customers getting a premium experience from Fiat dealers (especially Fiat-Chrysler paired dealers in the US).

    The problem is that most Alfa franchises are paired with Fiat already, and breaking these agreements would be very costly for FIAT. Even in the US where they could more easily introduce Alfa Romeo through Maserati dealers, Marchionne already promised new Fiat dealers that they will be given more product (both Fiat and Alfa Romeo), and that they will not remain a 1-2 car franchise. What can Marchionne offer Fiat dealers worldwide to replace existing and promised Alfa cars?

  4. De Witte is absolutely right, the 5k : 50k : 500k seems the logical direction the group should take.

  5. is the right strategy, if dealers Alfa Romeo start to sell Maserati too, obviously acquiring the right training and technology, so Maserati and Alfa Romeo can duplicate their dealers.

  6. the same could be for Fiat and Dodge, and Chrysler and Lancia, because I think was a big mistake stop to sell Chrysler and Dodge in Europe. for example , Lancia can be a variant more sports of Chrysler.

    • Yes, it was a big mistake to stop selling Chrysler in Europe. And Lancia products should be unique from Chrysler’s, more style and sporty as they were years ago. Perhaps something like Citroen’s DS brand, maybe a new Delta could take over Giulietta’s position while Alfa moves toward more premium product together with Maserati…

  7. It makes perfect sense to tie the two together. Currently Maserati’s brand image is sky high compared with Alfa Romeo’s even though Alfa is arguably the more prestigious than even Ferrari in the Fiat empire. Years of neglect and poor management has reduced Alfa to a scrap heap in a corner though yet it’s heart beats strong enough to be resurrected. And how better than with the help of it’s fit big brother and sister, Ferrari and Maserati. Sharing platforms, engines etc is great. However I doubt if it is right for Alfa to abandon the B and C segment. Therefore there will have to be separate stand-alone AR dealers for these cars and I’m not sure selling a Super mini in a Maserati dealership is good business.
    It’s time that someone gave the Germans a break with their boring dominance and who better than the Italians to effect that? 😉

      • Germans have afraid only of the Italians , they always make the race of the hare. The great mistake of Vw was to not take the Chrysler, would so have achieved three goals, have the Jeep, take the American market and to derail Fiat.
        (P.S. your friends of Autoitalian are stopped again?)

  8. I Hope Lancia will join them, to creat a triple of High Luxurious car brand in Fiat Spa

  9. Lancia today is only a badge used to rebrand Chryslers in continental Europe

  10. I absolutely agree about selling Maseratis and Alfa Romeo together, but don´t be so enthusiastic about the 4C because it is not better than the germans, It needs to be improved with an electronic turbo(maybe), a better gearbox and a revised chassis.
    Maserati needs the now mandatory head up display and radar which I guess it is not available in any of its cars.

    • Hola Javier. Why do you say that the 4C should get those improvements? have you tried it? this Alfa Romeo has got very good scores from international car press.

  11. Hola Juan, the 4C was a disapointment in last EVO COTY, some others journalist agree. I have not driven it but I guess those improvements are easy to reach and would make the 4C a flawless car.

  12. Alfa should have been paired with Ferrari and had a range that mirrored the Ferrari range. e.g. Mirroring the California, F12 & GTC4, would be a range based on shortened Guilia platform, maybe called Spider, GTV and Brera.
    The 4C would be the mid engined sports car, (488) with special models like the Ferrari.
    Finally a new model, using the Ferrari Dino platform, would be the halo model, possibly hybrid.
    Maserati, meanwhile should be following a similar pattern to Jaguar, with overtly sporting GT style cars in a wider range of sizes.
    The Alfa Guilia should become a Maserati as the brand has greater value, hence greater premium.
    Keep in the small exec, exec and large car ranges with saloon, coupe, tourer, SUV. Think better looking MB CLS, MLC etc.
    This would then enable Lancia to make a return as a high end brand, think Bentley & Rolls Royce.

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