yeah image is a biggy with a lot folk
A woman i know called the Alfa a tarted up Fiat
Common enough - even in Italy. Funny thing is - I've discovered a lot of people don't know that A - Ferrari is owned by Fiat (well, FCA), just like Alfa Romeo; B - Alfa Romeo and Ferrari are more closely related than any other two manufacturers on the market. It really sticks out compared to, for example, the whole Audi/Volkswagen/SEAT/Skoda thing, were people don't say an Audi is a "tarted up VW" but say a Skoda or a SEAT are basically an Audi.
I prefer the image of Alfa to BMW et al it was one of the reasons I bought one .
kind of left field choice ' a bit of maverick - the sort of car interesting and intelligent people choose.
That's where the horse dies horribly - I agree with you; As much as I tried to persuade myself of the contrary, picturing me pulling up in a BMW or Audi just doesn't work, even something like an M4/S5 still have that "Tom, Dick and Harry" aura in my eyes (most can't distinguish them from the usual diesel crud). People would say "oh wow, great car!" and think "uh, he must be making a pretty penny", but I'd see myself as a phony, I'd never be happy with something everyone else has and I'd probably be coming across as an especial ******** as I'd be pointing out to everyone it's not a cheap ass wannabe diesel one, but a 6-cylinders that burns babies for fuel.
In the eyes of Joe and Jane from the street, however, I and you are the fools - driving a "tarted up Fiat" that costs an amount that "you could afford a BMW or Audi" for. When you're trying to sell cars, this is an enormous problem.
Yeah that's a worry , I liked SAAB
but I can't see Alfa breaking into the luxury market any time soon so maybe they will remain niche but sell enough units to remain in business or alternatively get taken over by a big group and become one of their niche brands a bit like Lamborghini is to Audi group ( albeit not supercars )
Trouble is Hector, they said that of Saab. Look where they are now!
Big problem is who they sell to - sell to a Chinese / Korean group and the fate of the brand will be sealed; Even Hyundai or KIA don't have the reputation to overshadow the commonly ingrained bad one Alfa has, and they'd just be called "tarded up KIAs" instead of tarted up FIATs. I am afraid that, if Alfa Romeo comes to a point where FCA absolutely have to sell it, nothing short of the VAG group will have the sheer marketing power to turn it around.