Following with the 2017 global results by brand which have included Fiat, Jeep and Ram so far, it is time for Alfa Romeo. For the first time in 6 years, the brand global sales exceeded 100.000 units during what is considered its rinascimento year. With the arrival of the Giulia sedan and Stelvio SUV, Alfa Romeo finally got the first boost it was waiting for.
Global sales at Alfa Romeo increased by a massive 60% to more than 115.000 units in 2017. It was the best result since 2011, when the Italian brand sold around 137.000 vehicles globally. The strong growth is certainly related to the latest launches and to the fact that Alfa has finally joined the booming SUV segment. As the Mito never worked, and the Giulietta hasn’t got any facelift since its introduction in 2010, the brand needed new products to avoid its disappereance.
The Giulia had its first full year in the market but its results didn’t meet the management targets. The beautiful sedan is far from being considered a success with modest results even in Italy where doesn’t lead the segment. A total of 41.000 Giulias were sold globally in 2017, with Italy counting for almost 24% of the total. US demand came next with 8.900 units. The Giulia was launched in China in the second semester and sold around 5.600 units. Its European results were negatively affected by the lack of the SW version.
Better situation for the Stelvio, which hit the markets in Q2 2017. Alfa Romeo sold 25.000 units of its first SUV, with Italy, China and USA as its biggest markets. In contrast to the Giulia, the Stelvio makes part of a hot-selling segment and therefore has a better sales growth potential. Nevertheless, its competitors are being renewed and grab important pieces of the segment. This year the Stelvio is expected to sell around 80.000 units.
Meanwhile the aged products of Alfa Romeo posted declines in 2017. Global sales for the Giulietta totaled 35.200 units, down by 23%; the Mito’s volume decreased by 12% to 12.500 units, the lowest result since its introduction in 2008. With no big changes expected to come in the coming months, sales for both models will continue to shrink. Italy counted for 59% of their total sales. It was worse for the 4C, whose sales dropped by 30% to only 1.500 units.
USA and China can be part of the solution, but the brand needs more than two products. Results for the first year indicate that there is room for Alfa Romeo, at least in the premium segment. Despite the strong position of the German brands in China, and the lack of interest of American for anything that is not a SUV, the Italian car maker has a potential there. However, the Stelvio won’t be able to do it by its own, and soon Alfa will need more SUVs.
The new arrivals certainly helped Alfa to increase its global sales. The Giulia and Stelvio are great cars that demonstrate that FCA can make competitive premium cars. But they probably arrived too late and the fight is going to be tough. The Giulia is already showing signs of decline, and the Stelvio is taking longer to take off. The Mito is now 10 years old with no successor in the pipeline. If the brand wants to keep the sales growth pace it needs more products, a compact and a large SUV. China should be the priority once the new models arrive.
Source: FGW database, Automotive News Europe, Bestsellingcarsblog.com, Carsitaly.net, KBA, SMMT, UNRAE, ANIACAM, CCFA, FENABRAVE, Autoblog Argentina, JATO Dynamics, Autoblog Uruguay, Motor.com.co, Goodcarbadcar.net