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View Full Version : Fiat dealers to have a chance at 4C (article)



Andree
11-04-2013, 08:45 AM
Marchionne: “the best performing Fiat dealers will be the ones that will be entitled to have a crack at Alfa Romeo distribution.”

Read more: http://www.autonews.com/article/20131104/RETAIL/131109938/fiat-dealers-have-chance-to-get-alfa

Also:
"Chrysler-Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne acknowledges a conflict over whether Maserati or Fiat dealers will sell Alfa Romeos in the United States, but states his plan is to market Alfa Romeo also through the best performing Fiat dealers."

http://www.inautonews.com/fiat-still-not-sure-whether-to-sell-alfa-in-the-us-through-fiat-or-maserati-dealerships

trevc
11-04-2013, 09:39 AM
The US launch of the 4c is delayed now until at least Summer 2014. Looks like another failure to reintroduce Alfa to the US market.
This combined with the 500L production being halted due to supplier issues I wonder how long it will be before we see some Fiat studios closing down?

Andree
11-04-2013, 11:47 AM
I don't know if many will close. If it's an isolated dealer, they probably wouldn't close, as they are the only dealer in the area, and the only one doing service. There are the clusters of dealers that are in well-populated areas, and perhaps one or two of those may close. Except we just had a NEW dealer open in this area, and it already has other dealers.

While the one car (500/Abarth) looks pretty much the same, it has so many variations and price points. Add to that most of the cars are available used now, which may bring in more people to the Fiat dealer for service. And makes the models more available to all. Some of those previously owned vehicles have been traded in on new Fiats.

It's a good car, ideal city car, nothing about that has changed.

I had a father and son (teen aged) checking out my car awhile back. It appeals to all ages. There will be people getting their first car this year and next year and so on. The Fiat is a good choice for a first car, new or used, with all the safety features. It's a good choice for a runabout for families. Because a huge vehicle isn't always needed. It's a good choice for all kinds of people, as lives are in constant change.

If one car was to be available, it's best that it is the 500 small size. There just aren't that many good small cars, and small cars with the kind of variety available from Fiat.

Fiat500USA
11-04-2013, 12:18 PM
Fiat learned about launching a new brand into the market with the 500. They need to get the distribution right. Having the 4C launch prematurely is not in the cards, not to mention the other Alfa models are still up in the air. This is their last chance, and they want to get it right. When they are ready, they'll need the top performing Fiat dealers to help them achieve the sales numbers Marchionne is envisioning, so the (good) dealers should take heart in that.

The previous Alfa's were simply not suited for the US market. Talking to my sources inside the company earlier in the year, for example, they said the Giulietta is a nice car, but was let down by the interior furnishings. The Brera, which I would love to have, is nice, but they felt was too heavy. I've owned an Alfa GTV6 for almost 30 years and love Alfas, but I don't want them to fail here. I've been telling everyone I know at the company since 2009 that they need to pull out all the stops and come up with a masterpiece. My suggestion was they should go down the hallway to Ferrari and tap into their knowledge base, and if I were Elkann, I would move into a condo and spend the money so the Fiat Group could crush VW (like it used to). As it is, now all new technology from the Group is to be introduced through Alfa Romeo, so that is a good start. I have high hopes for the new Giulia, so I think the wait will be worth it.

Robert Nixon
11-04-2013, 12:26 PM
Yeah, it's frustrating for more delays, but agree with you that they have to get it right, and Marchionne has been saying this all along. I still like the strategy of the 4C to generate a lot of interest (it is now), but the real test will be with the Giulia sedan and the Alfa/Miata in the future.

Andree
11-04-2013, 09:12 PM
Another article:

2014 Alfa Romeo 4C May Come To Maserati Dealers After All

http://www.thecarconnection.com/news/1088167_2014-alfa-romeo-4c-may-come-to-maserati-dealers-after-all

I started to write out a comment earlier, changed my mind, and now can just copy and paste in a much better worded comment from a reader at the above link:


rick
• 6 hours ago

In my opinion, it makes far more sense to put it in the Fiat stores. Commission driven salesmen will treat them, and the customers that come looking for them, like lepers at the Maserati stores. At Fiat, the Alfa and it's potential customers will drive the stores upscale and attract traffic.

If Alfa dreamers come in to look at the car at a Maserati dealership but come to the realization they can't afford it, there is nowhere to go but out the door. At Fiat, an astute salesman can steer this same customer right to the Abarth.
___________________

Think ahead to the future, of both Fiat and Alfa. And no, I don't know much of anything about Alfa these days or Fiat for that matter. But just from the few articles I've caught...

Fiat wants to maximize it's 500 line to include a little bit of everything.

Alfa wants to offer up sports cars, sedans, wagons, SUVs.

Together there can be a wide range of vehicles at one combined dealership that don't really compete with each other. And can allow both Fiat and Alfa to do a bit of wandering into each others price ranges. Because some of my ideas included more upscale 500 models. With the fancier interiors. Ones that are less expensive than the 595 and 695 versions of the Abarth, but with the upgraded interiors. Yes, also an upscale interior on the 500e.

And I don't know what the cost is of the Alfa/Miata Spyder will be. Various guesses are out there, and $30,000 sounds about right. So there's a nice flow of prices within the same dealership.

Another reason I see the 4C hitting Fiat, notice the colors available, it's all Abarth. They have black, gray, two whites, two reds. With a black interior. I was playing around on the 4C configurator yesterday. Then I hit the Maserati configurator, and found endless choices on colors for exterior and interior parts. Too many, really. But that works for people with that much money to spend on a vehicle. I rather think that Maserati people would be somewhat disappointed in the lack of choices in the 4C.

As I've said before, I simply don't want an all-black interior again. Loved being able to choose a nice white exterior AND interior over at Maserati. Yes, I went white and black in a convertible. I like it like that. Was tempted by the blue and burgundy possibilities too.

So, place the Alfa in with Fiats. The colors work with the Fiats already available. And there will be all kinds of possibilities for cross selling brands. Sports cars, family cars, small cars, SUVs, etc. It would be a splendid mix as the two brands evolve their lines.

Abarth619
11-04-2013, 10:07 PM
Why not sell them at both? Both brands could use the increased traffic and higher model count. I think Fiat dealers would be furious if the Alfas strictly went to Maserati. These dealers have already had to deal with a botched Fiat relaunch. Relaunching a brand with only one car with J-LO as the spokes model was IMO, a poorly executed idea. They really should have had at least 3 models ready to go at the time of the relaunch.

On top of that, releasing a 500L SUV/Wagon with no AWD! That was a major boner move too. Just give us the darn Alfa Romeo brand already, this car should have already been out last year. Sergio is a pretty smart guy, but some of the business decisions being made over at Fiat regarding its relaunch in America have baffled me. I don't think this company can afford to fail in America and I don't want them too either.

ScorpionSkins.com
11-04-2013, 10:39 PM
Relaunching a brand with only one car with J-LO as the spokes model was IMO, a poorly executed idea.

I'm still trying to picture that business meeting:
"QUICK! We need celebrities to reintroduce our brand into the North American market"
"Best we can do is J-Lo and Charlie Sheen"
"...sure, whatever. roll with it"

Ah well, no big deal. I would have liked to see an Italo-American actor to advertise the Fiat. With the Abarth, a prominent Italian race car driver. It's pretty much impossible to ignore the Italian heritage of these cars anyhow.

I'd argue Alfa is considered more of a "prestigious" brand. I predict a Maserati affiliation based on that.

Andree
11-05-2013, 12:40 PM
I have to ask after reading a first drive article, who is the target market? This isn't a car for anything other than invigorated driving. It's certainly not a main form of transportation for anyone, anywhere. Are there really that many people who buy weekend cars for the track?

shadyabarth
11-05-2013, 02:28 PM
I have to ask after reading a first drive article, who is the target market? This isn't a car for anything other than invigorated driving. It's certainly not a main form of transportation for anyone, anywhere. Are there really that many people who buy weekend cars for the track?

You will be surprised..Come to where i work and see first hand!

Robert Nixon
11-05-2013, 02:43 PM
Yes, it's a car for enthusiasts that can afford a $54,000 fun car. With only about 4,000 or whatever being made a year for the world, just a portion will come to the US, so that still leaves plenty of millionaires that need the latest newest toy.

While 50K is more than I'm spending on a car, there are probably plenty of $50K pickup trucks too.

Last year in the US the average new car sale price was over $30,000.

ScorpionSkins.com
11-05-2013, 05:49 PM
Yes, it's a car for enthusiasts that can afford a $54,000 fun car. With only about 4,000 or whatever being made a year for the world, just a portion will come to the US, so that still leaves plenty of millionaires that need the latest newest toy.

While 50K is more than I'm spending on a car, there are probably plenty of $50K pickup trucks too.

Last year in the US the average new car sale price was over $30,000.

I never really care to pay attention to these numbers. $54,000 is probably the base model cost, not considering delivery and dealership fees, optionals and accessories, taxes, and financing. With all that out of the way, I wouldn't be surprised seeing that number jump into the $70,000+ range, keys in hand (Especially in Canada, where the average price of any car is higher than the U.S. counterpart anyhow). God bless those of you that can reasonably consider such an expense, but thinking of a $750-$1000/month car payment or full purchase of that amount makes me choke!

Abarth619
11-05-2013, 06:14 PM
I never really care to pay attention to these numbers. $54,000 is probably the base model cost, not considering delivery and dealership fees, optionals and accessories, and financing. With all that out of the way, I wouldn't be surprised seeing that number jump into the $70,000+ range, keys in hand (Especially in Canada, where the average price of any car is higher than the U.S. counterpart anyhow). God bless those of you that can reasonably consider such an expense, but thinking of a $750-$1000/month car payment or full purchase of that amount makes me choke! Yeah if I were spending 70K on a car, I can get 3 times the car from another brand or on the used market. It's a nice car don't get me wrong, but I'm just not seeing 70K keys in hand nice.

Fiat500USA
11-05-2013, 09:29 PM
Most of these cars will be bought up by those who buy Ferraris or Maseratis. This kind of money for a car like this not a problem. Remember Fiat sells the Tributo Abarth cars for double what a normal Abarth costs and they sell out. This is an exclusive, arguably exotic and handbuilt car made in the Maserati factory. Talk of practicality or traditional values do not apply.

Me rod
11-05-2013, 11:53 PM
Yeah if I were spending 70K on a car, I can get 3 times the car from another brand or on the used market. It's a nice car don't get me wrong, but I'm just not seeing 70K keys in hand nice.

This car has not been designed to make money. It is called a loss leader. Who buys it, whether it is a good price and from which dealership is unimportant. The purpose of the 4C is to set the tone of the forthcoming Alfa brand in the US and abroad.

Abarth619
11-06-2013, 12:32 AM
This car has not been designed to make money. It is called a loss leader. Who buys it, whether it is a good price and from which dealership is unimportant. The purpose of the 4C is to set the tone of the forthcoming Alfa brand in the US and abroad. I know why their building it and I know it's not to make money. It helps brings excitement to the brand and I'm glad their building it. Almost every car company builds one at some point and I think it'll effectively build excitement for the relaunch of Alfa.

I was just expressing my opinion about what I think about the car and what you're getting for your money. I just think it's a bit overpriced for its performance class. It's a great car don't get me wrong and maybe I should reserve my judgements until it releases.

Andree
11-06-2013, 01:09 PM
I know why their building it and I know it's not to make money. It helps brings excitement to the brand and I'm glad their building it. Almost every car company builds one at some point and I think it'll effectively build excitement for the relaunch of Alfa.

I was just expressing my opinion about what I think about the car and what you're getting for your money. I just think it's a bit overpriced for its performance class. It's a great car don't get me wrong and maybe I should reserve my judgements until it releases.

I don't reserve judgments, although I've stopped myself from blurting out a few things on the 4C. But I won't hold back now...It's a stupid car to use "reintroduce Alfa" to the US. And all my thoughts on it come from my logical practicality standpoint, which means that everything I think about it as being negative is a positive to many enthusiasts. LOL!

I'd bring the MiTo (as I posted just now) and the 4C at the same time. 4C at Maserati and Fiat, with the MiTo and other forthcoming Alfas at Fiat.

Does Alfa REALLY want their introduction back in the US to consist of a high performance, high priced, high markup, hard-to-find, uncomfortable, impractical vehicle? It will set the tone for forthcoming vehicles. "Oh, Alfas, those are expensive and uncomfortable". Or "Oh, Alfas, aren't those only at Maserati dealerships?".

It's excitement for auto reviewers and well-to-do folks, to be sure. But it's that first impression that will set the tone on the general public opinion for all Alfas. Once the price is known, people won't be too eager to investigate other Alfas.

If I was running the show, I'd want all kinds of people coming into the Fiat dealerships to check out both Alfas and Fiats. I'd want some comfortable cars, affordable, etc. The 4C is rather awkward to place with Fiats or with Maseratis.

And there won't be that many, so it's silly to add an Alfa designation to any Fiat stores, with only the one expensive car available in the US. It would be like going into Fiat when they first started and finding no 500s at all. How can you sell something that isn't there and isn't coming in, because it was a limited run?

Bring the MiTo, in all it's offerings including if possible the diesel and the twin-air. Put up that Alfa sign alongside the Fiat sign at the studios. And offer up the 4C, it'll look pretty on the showroom floor.

Andree
11-06-2013, 01:11 PM
This car has not been designed to make money. It is called a loss leader. Who buys it, whether it is a good price and from which dealership is unimportant. The purpose of the 4C is to set the tone of the forthcoming Alfa brand in the US and abroad.


And that is my biggest complaint, it's setting the tone in a way to discourage the general public. Not a good sales idea, if the purpose is to sell many Alfas in the future.

Andree
11-06-2013, 08:10 PM
P.S. By all means, feel free (anyone!) to write out their point of view. I only have my own thoughts/ideas, and general perspective.

The only way I learn what other people think is by:
a. digging through their trash
b. gazing into a crystal ball
c. rereading many outdated textbooks
d. looking over their shoulder to view their laptop screen
e. having them actually type out their own perspective/opinions right here

ScorpionSkins.com
11-06-2013, 08:48 PM
I don't reserve judgments, although I've stopped myself from blurting out a few things on the 4C. But I won't hold back now...It's a stupid car to use "reintroduce Alfa" to the US. And all my thoughts on it come from my logical practicality standpoint, which means that everything I think about it as being negative is a positive to many enthusiasts. LOL!

I'd bring the MiTo (as I posted just now) and the 4C at the same time. 4C at Maserati and Fiat, with the MiTo and other forthcoming Alfas at Fiat.

Does Alfa REALLY want their introduction back in the US to consist of a high performance, high priced, high markup, hard-to-find, uncomfortable, impractical vehicle? It will set the tone for forthcoming vehicles. "Oh, Alfas, those are expensive and uncomfortable". Or "Oh, Alfas, aren't those only at Maserati dealerships?".

It's excitement for auto reviewers and well-to-do folks, to be sure. But it's that first impression that will set the tone on the general public opinion for all Alfas. Once the price is known, people won't be too eager to investigate other Alfas.

If I was running the show, I'd want all kinds of people coming into the Fiat dealerships to check out both Alfas and Fiats. I'd want some comfortable cars, affordable, etc. The 4C is rather awkward to place with Fiats or with Maseratis.

And there won't be that many, so it's silly to add an Alfa designation to any Fiat stores, with only the one expensive car available in the US. It would be like going into Fiat when they first started and finding no 500s at all. How can you sell something that isn't there and isn't coming in, because it was a limited run?

Bring the MiTo, in all it's offerings including if possible the diesel and the twin-air. Put up that Alfa sign alongside the Fiat sign at the studios. And offer up the 4C, it'll look pretty on the showroom floor.

As I stated earlier, a $50000+ vehicle purchase isn't a reasonable purchase choice for the majority of us. They don't care to satisfy this fact with this vehicle, they only aim to create the desirability factor. This will eventually pull in both those people who can afford a vehicle with that price tag, as well as those who would like a more affordable vehicle of the same make in appreciation of the perceived engineering, build quality, performance, status, etc.

Abarth619
11-06-2013, 09:35 PM
Let's not forget that this is also the first years run of the car. I remember when the Dodge Challenger was first reintroduced with a 5000 car 'limited run' in 2008. I wanted one soooo bad. Unfortunately, they were in short supply and dealers were price gouging the hell out of them. Hell, they tried to do the same thing with the Abarth to some extent.

Boy am I glad I waited because the rich suckers who bought it at a ridiculous premium in 08 got hosed when production was ramped up in 09. I ended up getting a used one with 7K on it for a fraction of the price in 2009. Thank you foolish rich people for paying too much and taking that huge a** 1st owner deprecation hit for me.

Andree
11-06-2013, 10:19 PM
As I stated earlier, a $50000+ vehicle purchase isn't a reasonable purchase choice for the majority of us. They don't care to satisfy this fact with this vehicle, they only aim to create the desirability factor. This will eventually pull in both those people who can afford a vehicle with that price tag, as well as those who would like a more affordable vehicle of the same make in appreciation of the perceived engineering, build quality, performance, status, etc.

I don't want to spend $50,000 on HOUSING. I'm now looking at used FEMA trailers. Locally, even if they sell a trailer for one hundred dollars, they have a space rent of nearly 2,000 a month. I just can't afford it. Most trailers are on someone's land, and I'd still get financially pillaged via the space rent.

For the Alfas, let's look at comparables. The current Miata softtop is $24,000 and the hardtop is $29,000 (plus plus plus the usual pluses). Any NEW vehicle, like the Alfa/Mazda twins, will be MORE expensive. No bargains to be found there.

The article on the Guilia ( http://www.fiat500usaforum.com/showthread.php?12536-Giulia-model-sport-wagon-pic-%28article%29 ) says right at the top of the article "Italian brand aiming for luxury status with new Giulia mid-size sedan."

It goes on to say "The Giulia is expected to be powered by a 1.7-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine with about 177kW in many markets, while the US-market model will likely borrow a Chrysler-soured Pentastar 3.6-litre V6 engine, as seen in the Chrysler 300. As a product of the new underpinnings, it will likely be offered in both rear- and all-wheel-drive.

A new large sedan based on the Chrysler 300 and Maserati Ghibli to rival the Audi A6, BMW 5-Series and Mercedes-Benz E-Class and a family SUV spin-off will likely follow from late 2015."

It won't be cheap. $35,000 is an estimate: http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/alfa-romeo/giulia/34448/alfa-romeo-giulia-picture-release-date-and-price

Again, plus plus plus all the usual pluses.

So there won't be any small Alfa with an entry level price, nor will there be a SMALL 4 seater. The sedans will be midsize. And none of the vehicles will have the excellent gas mileage as found with the TwinAir.

James Turner
11-21-2014, 02:35 AM
I spoke to the owner of the dealer where I got my car. He said the 4C will be there!

Doohickie
11-21-2014, 03:17 AM
Holt Fiat of Ft Worth already has Alpha signage and display in their showroom.

BigDaddySRT
11-21-2014, 09:21 AM
Holt Fiat of Ft Worth already has Alpha signage and display in their showroom.

As does the Studio in McKinney, and the Studio in Dallas.... but there's just one major issue... No 4C's!!!!!! LOL.


Once again a horrible vehicle Launch by FCA.

The NA FIAT 500 ABARTH, the FIAT 500L, the Challenger Hellcat, the Scat Pack Program... do I need to keep listing Vehicle Launches that are screwed up byt FCA????

Andree
11-21-2014, 11:25 AM
... do I need to keep listing Vehicle Launches that are screwed up byt FCA????

No, that's okay. Thanks anyway.

mp4guy
11-21-2014, 12:34 PM
As does the Studio in McKinney, and the Studio in Dallas.... but there's just one major issue... No 4C's!!!!!! LOL.


Once again a horrible vehicle Launch by FCA.

The NA FIAT 500 ABARTH, the FIAT 500L, the Challenger Hellcat, the Scat Pack Program... do I need to keep listing Vehicle Launches that are screwed up byt FCA????

Cars have arrived this week at a handful of dealers across the country.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q-Kv4tZouUs

http://youtu.be/q-Kv4tZouUs

And yes, this was a botched launch.