Fiat is developing a new plan to revive its struggling Alfa Romeo brand, according to Fiat-Chrysler chief executive Sergio Marchionne. The new plan will be the fourth in nine years for Alfa Romeo, which has suffered a 30-percent drop in sales in the first nine months of 2013 to 51,000 units, according to the Europe's auto industry association. Marchionne said that they are determined to “reshape the Alfa Romeo platform” and that they will be in a position to “outline more” at the end of the first quarter of 2014."
Sources within the carmaker told Automotive News that a small team of engineers is currently developing a new, flexible rear- and all-wheel-drive platform that is expected to underpin at least four new Alfa Romeo models: the Giulia mid-sized sedan and wagon, a large flagship sedan and a mid-sized sports utility vehicle.
The team is reporting directly to Harald Wester, Fiat-Chrysler's chief technical officer and the chief executive of Alfa Romeo and Maserati.
The first of the vehicles based on the new platform will be launched in Europe in late 2015 or early 2016. All Alfa Romeo vehicles underpinned by the new architecture are expected to be sold in the United States.
The brand is slated to return to the US next summer with the 4C coupe. A source told Automotive News that the new architecture could also underpin the replacements for the Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger large sedans and future Dodge Challenger coupe.