As soon Alfa Romeo gets a foothold in the U.S. market and expands to bigger models, it’s likely to outsell Fiat, according to Peter Grady, the head of network development for the Chrysler Group. The excitement is high for the arrival of the 4C sports car later this year. This is the first Alfa Romeo to be made available in the U.S. in almost 20 years. Alfa Romeo will be offered at Fiat dealerships in the U.S. After the Alfa lineup in the U.S. is filled out, it’s expected that the brand will have higher sales than that of Fiat models. When interviewed at the National Automobile Dealers Association's annual convention, Grady said that Alfa Romeo is predicted to have a “little bit larger volume” than Fiat. Alfa Romeo models were available in the U.S. until the mid-1990s before the company was purchased by Fiat SpA.
It can be recalled that in the 1967 movie “The Graduate,” the character that Dustin Hoffman played famously drove an Alfa Romeo Spider. Fiat’s namesake brand was available in the U.S. until the mid-1980s and it went back in 2011 with the subcompact Fiat 500. In a presentation made to analysts last Friday in New York, it was revealed that Alfa Romeo will make its distribution network by leveraging the "global footprint and premium position" of Chrysler's Jeep brand outside of Chrysler's home of North America.
Sergio Marchionne, CEO of both Fiat and Chrysler, has been saying that Jeep and Alfa Romeo are the only true global brands in the portfolios of the two companies. In addition, Marchionne said that he aims to merge the two firms by 2015. Fiat currently owns 58.5% of Chrysler. It previously owned just 20% in 2009 when the automaker emerged from bankruptcy.