Fiat plans to develop a new line of rear-wheel-drive sedans and sport-utility vehicles to bolster Alfa Romeo and take on the likes of Bayerische Motoren Werke AG, people familiar with the matter said.
The models will start to hit the market in 2016, and high-end versions will be equipped with motors developed by Ferrari, the Fiat-owned supercar maker, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the discussions are private.
Chief Executive Officer Sergio Marchionne’s sought-after turnaround of Alfa Romeo has been going nowhere. Since the executive took the reins at Fiat in 2004, Alfa Romeo’s annual deliveries tumbled 56 percent to 74,000 cars. In 2012, he scaled back a sales target for the Italian nameplate by 40 percent as promised models were delayed by a spending halt in Europe. With auto demand in the region recovering and Fiat armed with more resources thanks to the takeover of Chrysler, it may be now or never for the sporty brand.Read Article