Alfa Romeo auto news

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Report: Marchionne offers belated apology for 'wop engine' comment

05/22/2013   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Etc., Chrysler, Alfa Romeo, Luxury, FIAT

Fiat-Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne talks with microphone and his hand up

Automotive News reports Fiat-Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne has issued a written apology for his comments regarding his decision to stick with an Italian engine for the upcoming Alfa Romeo 4C. As you may recall, back in January, Marchionne was quoted as saying, "I cannot come up with a schlock product, I just won't. I won't put an American engine into that car. With all due respect to my American friends, it has to be a wop engine." The CEO penned an apology to the Italian American ONE VOICE Coalition for using the racial epithet, saying that he made the comment in jest. Marchionne also said he realizes his remarks were unacceptable.

ONE VOICE, an organization aimed at fighting discrimination and stereotyping of Italian Americans, thanked Marchionne, Chrysler and Fiat for the apology. Marchionne is an Italian-born Canadian citizen, and he's gotten in trouble for other comments in the past. In 2011, he called high interest rates Chrysler was paying to the Canadian government "shyster rates." He apologized a day later.

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Alfa Romeo 8C, Maserati Quattroporte and Granturismo models recalled over rust fears

05/20/2013   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Sports/GTs, Recalls/TSBs, Safety, Maserati, Alfa Romeo, Luxury

Alfa Romeo 8C

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has announced Maserati and Alfa Romeo are recalling certain Quattroporte, Granturismo and 8C models over potentially faulty tie rod ends. According to NHTSA, 2005-2008 Quattroporte, 2008 Granturismo and 2008 8C units may have been assembled with tie rod ends that have insufficient corrosion protection. As such, the components may rust, weaken and potentially fail. If that happens, the driver could lose control of the vehicle and cause an accident.

Maserati and Alfa Romeo will contact owners and replace the tie rod end assemblies once the recall gets underway in June. All told, 7,438 vehicles are impacted by the recall. You can read the full NHTSA notice below for more information.

Continue reading Alfa Romeo 8C, Maserati Quattroporte and Granturismo models recalled over rust fears

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Video: Alfa Romeo Guilietta to star in Fast & Furious 6 [w/video]

05/07/2013   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Sedans/Saloons, Euro, Marketing/Advertising, Videos, Alfa Romeo, Celebrities, TV/Movies

We wanted to play this one straight, but since it involves Fast & Furious 6 we just couldn't figure out how. Alfa Romeo is touting the role of the Guilietta in the next episode of car guys and gals versus bad guys and gals, and the now-Europe-inclusive franchise is using the post-stunt vehicles in its advertising. Well, we might add.

We'll let the breathy, exclamatory press release below speak for itself, along with the trailer in which you get to see the "modified" Giulietta demonstrating the textbook technique for pulling down an Antonov cargo plane at take-off speed. You'll find a very Italian set of high-res images above.

Continue reading Alfa Romeo Guilietta to star in Fast & Furious 6 [w/video]

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Report: Alfa exec confirms SUV to arrive within 2-3 years

05/03/2013   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: SUVs, Crossovers/CUVs, Alfa Romeo, UK

Alfa Romeo Kamal

"There will certainly be an SUV in the next two or three years," said Damien Dally, head of the Alfa Romeo brand in the UK, speaking to The Telegraph. We've known for quite some time that Alfa Romeo had plans for a sport utility vehicle - the automaker has gone so far as to produce a concept of what such a machine may look like, as seen by the Kamal above.

We've even heard a few dates from Alfa Romeo about when to expect its production SUV, and so far, each of them has come and gone with nary a 'ute to be seen. Still, where there's smoke there's fire, and we really do think the Italian automaker is cooking up an SUV or two, possibly based on underpinnings borrowed from either the Jeep Cherokee, Grand Cherokee, or both - remember, both Jeep and Alfa fall under the massive Fiat umbrella held up by Sergio Marchionne.

Of course, we've been waiting for Alfa Romeo's return to the United States for what feels like an eternity, so we're not holding our breath for a flock of US-market machines anytime soon. That said, we'll keep our ears to the ground for more on any potential new Alfa SUVs or crossovers, and as soon as we know anything solid, so will you.

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Report: How the US market will help Alfa triple sales in three years

04/12/2013   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Coupes, Sports/GTs, Euro, Alfa Romeo, Luxury

Alfa Romeo 4C

Automotive News Europe reports Alfa Romeo has a plan to triple its global sales by 2016, meaning the automaker will need to increase its sales to around 300,000 units in less than three years. Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne has set the ambitious targets for the brand, but Alfa Romeo head Louis-Carl Vignon believes the numbers are realistic, thanks in no small part to the fact that the company is headed to the US market. Right now, Alfa Romeo relies on selling its old MiTo and Giullietta in Europe - a region that continues to suffer at the hands of an extended economic downturn.

Moving forward, Alfa Romeo will have new products available in new markets outside of the EU. The brand will return to the US this year for the first time since 1995, and the company plans to be in Africa, Russia and the Middle East by 2016 as well.

The 4C will lead the brand's return to American soil, with the mid-engined sports car headed to this year's LA Auto Show for a North American debut. Shortly thereafter, the company's Giulia sedan and wagon as well as an unnamed large premium sedan will also show up on dealer lots.

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Report: Audi rumored to buy Alfa Romeo, officials deny it

03/29/2013   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Euro, Plants/Manufacturing, Audi, Earnings/Financials, Alfa Romeo, FIAT

2014 Alfa Romeo 4C live at Geneva Motor Show reveal

For more than two years, Volkswagen has been making public statements about its willingness to buy Alfa Romeo and quadruple the Italian brand's sales, and for just as long, Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne has replied with some version of "Mr. Piëch, drop it." According to a report in Ward's Auto, all that jousting might be over: it claims that sources close to both Marchionne and Audi CEO Rupert Stadler admit that the two are in talks for Audi to buy not just Alfa Romeo, but a production plant in Italy. In fact, a final deal could possibly include partsmaker Magnetti Marelli.

Against that backdrop, a report by German news weekly Stern quotes a Fiat spokesmen as saying it doesn't comment on rumors and an Audi rep has said flatly that "There is no substance in the news." If a sale is being arranged, the timing would seem to point to how eager Fiat is to raise cash to complete its major initiatives. Even though Alfa Romeo continues to delay its return to the US, it just showed off the production version of the 4C at the Geneva Motor Show (shown above) and said that preferred Fiat dealerships here would get them. Then there's Alfa's recently concluded deal with Mazda to develop a roadster based on the next generation MX-5 Miata - a deal that would seem to help both the Italian and Japanese brands.

The monetary issues are troublesome, though. Fiat is taking a beating in the European market and its weak-kneed balance sheet is delaying gotta-have-it products like the Jeep Cherokee. Fiat has been talking to banks about getting money to buy the rest of Chrysler and those financial institutions have also raised issues about debt and cash reserves, and the nasty game of chess Fiat is playing with the United Auto Workers (and now the court system about the portion of Chrysler it doesn't own) could end up blowing another hole in Marchionne's plans. It is possible that this could finally have convinced Fiat to at least see how serious Audi's parent company, Volkswagen, is about buying Alfa Romeo. Or it could be just another rumor.

Beyond Alfa Romeo, the report says the deal being discussed would include the rather modern Pomigliano d'Arco plant built just for the production of Alfa Romeos. Audi's interest in Magnetti Marelli is claimed to be because the German brand wants a components maker and it would also like to establish an R&D center in Italy, where its holdings already include Lamborghini, Ducati and the styling house Italdesign-Guigiaro.

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Video: Meet an Alfa owner unlike any other

03/16/2013   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Time Warp, Videos, Alfa Romeo

We've pretty much been digging on every Petrolicious video that we've come across thus far, but this new title, Never Enough Alfa, may be the most charming to date. In it we hear the story of Manuel Leon Minassian, and his self-proclaimed "psychotic" love of the Alfa Romeo brand.

The star of the episode is Minassian's lovely, race-prepped 1972 Alfa Romeo Berlina, which we get to hear and see on the road and driven with verve. But the interview setting of Minassian's completely bonkers warehouse/garage is, itself, worth the five minutes it will take you to watch all the way through.

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Geneva: Editors' Choice: Top Five 2013 Geneva Motor Show Debuts

03/08/2013   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Concept Cars, Geneva Motor Show, Lamborghini, Toyota, Volkswagen, Alfa Romeo, Design/Style, McLaren

Geneva Motor Show 2013 - show floor overview

We've returned from a very busy week in Switzerland, and in going back over all of our 75 stories from the Geneva Motor Show, our editors have gathered up their personal favorite debuts from the European expo.

The wonderful thing about the Geneva show is just how wide of an array of vehicles are on display - everything from funny little one-off EVs to the most exotic of supercars to, well, truly ridiculous displays of coachbuilding. And because of that, this list of our editors' favorites might not be as predictable as you think.

But we don't want to give anything away just yet. Scroll down to have a look at our team's favorites from Geneva.

Continue reading Editors' Choice: Top Five 2013 Geneva Motor Show Debuts

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Geneva: 2013 Alfa Romeo 4C is pretty, just don't look it in the eyes

03/05/2013   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Coupes, Sports/GTs, Geneva Motor Show, Euro, Alfa Romeo, Design/Style

2013 Alfa Romeo 4C

Ferrari isn't the only company with a mid-engined Italian machine at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show. Alfa Romeo finally unveiled the 2013 4C, complete with a turbocharged 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine mounted mid-ship. While no power figures are available at the moment, the engine is a version of the same lump that powers the Giulietta. In that application, the four-cylinder yields around 232 horsepower, though 4C buyers should expect a bit more punch. All that grunt gets shuttled to the rear wheels via a dual-clutch transmission with an unspecified number of gears. Engineers have worked to keep the two-door's weight to a minimum by using plenty of aluminum and carbon fiber.

With a carbon fiber chassis the 4C offers up a power-to-weight ratio of one horsepower for every 8.8 pounds. Though Alfa hasn't offered up a curb weight as of yet, we can extrapolate that a figure of under 2,500 pounds (probably unladen weight) is likely, which is impressive. The company has expounded on the model's various traction control modes, however, saying drivers will be able to choose between Dynamic, Natural, All Weather and Race modes. We also know the car is drop dead gorgeous so long as you can keep from looking at the decidedly awkward headlamps. Check out the press release below for more information.

Continue reading 2013 Alfa Romeo 4C is pretty, just don't look it in the eyes

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Geneva: Touring Superleggera Disco Volante is a stunning labor of love

03/05/2013   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Coupes, Sports/GTs, Geneva Motor Show, Euro, Alfa Romeo, Design/Style, Luxury

Touring Superleggera Disco Volante

If there's one thing Italian coachbuilders are good for, it's turning out lust-worthy pieces of machinery. Touring Superleggera pulled the sheets back on its very own effort in that category with the Disco Volante. The Alfa Romeo 8C-based creation, which was shown last year as a design study, bowed at this year's Geneva Motor Show and was inspired by none other than the 1952 Alfa Romeo C52 Disco Volante. With the Alfa 8C's 444-horsepower 4.7-liter V8 lurking under that aluminum and carbon fiber bodywork, this modern take on the classic should have no trouble hustling down your favorite Italian Alpine pass.

The sprint to 62 miles per hour will take you a slim 4.2 seconds, and the speedometer will wrap all the way to 181 mph before the bespoke coupe runs out of steam. Of course, that's once you take delivery. According to Touring Superleggera, each car will take some 4,000 man hours to complete, soaking up six months of the company's time in the process. Looks worth every second.

Continue reading Touring Superleggera Disco Volante is a stunning labor of love

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