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Alfa to move to USA if Unions don't play ball?

Fiat Threatens to Shift Alfa Romeo Revamp Outside Italy - Bloomberg

Of course this could delay the "new programme" by a few more years. Guilia 2016? Perhaps he should ask us all if we want American Alfas?
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Terrible move. Alfa will be producing passionless wagons full of plastic that don't recognise corners!! Only worse country would be France...
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Terrible move. Alfa will be producing passionless wagons full of plastic that don't recognise corners!! Only worse country would be France...
You also forgot the ridiculously soft suspension, horrid braking ability, it was made by some fat texan called Bob, and it will have some disgustingly huge engine that puts out as much horsepower as my lawnmower.

Alfa need to stay in Italy! Though they also need to increase their build quality and reliability. If they can get the build quality and reliability up to scratch then Alfa should definitely start seeing a good turn around in their fortunes. Well hopefully anyway
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Doesn't really matter where the cars are assembled, does it, apart from in wooly brand terms? Designed, yes, built, no.

I suppose it might mean that all of the car is undersealed, rather than just half of it.
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But FIAT's best manufacturing plants, going by WCM ratings, are all in Europe. Pomigliano looks like getting the WCM Gold award this year - a far cry from the days of Alfa Sud.

FIAT Group have seriously turned their quality around in the last decade. It'll take a long time for this to filter through to the public perception, but if you look at the car that marked the introduction of WCM, the Panda, it really does hold its value, and buyers are starting to realise that being a FIAT doesn't prevent it being a solid, reliable car. Bravos are also very solid, which is a shame as the car found relatively few buyers.
For Alfa, the Mito is very reliable and Giulietta is also very good on mechanical reliability and ease of service (trim issues are a real problem, and damage the overall perception of how well built the car is).

The other reason not to leave Italy is that there isn't capacity anywhere else in FIAT/Chrylser. The US plants are all on extra shifts; it's the Italian facilities that are idling thanks to lack of domestic demand. The whole thing sounds like sabre-rattling from Sergio...
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Even if it moves to the US (which it won't, they are just trying to push a deal with the Italian unions), this would not affect the cars' handling and materials, since the cars would still be designed and specced as before - they'd just be assembled in the US where people are a bit more accepting of the concept of working for a living.

Would that make a difference to the build quality of the cars? Not if quality control is enforced as rigorously as before, or better. It could theoretically even result in fewer lemons, if QC is made very strong.

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...
I agree with pretty much your whole post, as you know, but if they can establish WCM at the historically horrible Pom in the face of union pressure, national politics etc, then surely it can be photocopied and installed at any arbitrary site? Am I missing some magic? It seems it's a combination of organisational setup and process, rather than anything more local.
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they are just trying to push a deal with the Italian unions
This! The decision to build the Alfa range (excl. Spider) in Italy is an important factor for their credibility as The Italian Premium Alternative.

Building in Serbia, Poland, Mexico, the USA or Brasil wouldn't help the comeback. And as stated by Fiat's investor material there's no alternative for the Italian factories. Fiat would have to close some and pay a high price for it.
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Building in Serbia, Poland, Mexico, the USA or Brasil wouldn't help the comeback. And as stated by Fiat's investor material there's no alternative for the Italian factories.
Does it really matter? Most car buyers couldn't care less where their car is made; if you're trying to establish yourself as a "premium" brand maybe "made in Italy" is not your best selling point!
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t if they can establish WCM at the historically horrible Pom in the face of union pressure, national politics etc, then surely it can be photocopied and installed at any arbitrary site? Am I missing some magic? It seems it's a combination of organisational setup and process, rather than anything more local.
Pretty much. It takes time, though, and money. Pomigliano was effectively rebuilt at a cost of over €1 billion. It's now the most advanced facility in Europe, but is now a FIAT small-car plant; it's not going to see any Alfa production, I think.

FIAT pushed WCM into Chrylser, and it is having an impact on their quality, but any continuous improvement method like WCM takes several years to bear fruit, and FIAT are five years ahead of Chrysler.
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Does it really matter? Most car buyers couldn't care less where their car is made; if you're trying to establish yourself as a "premium" brand maybe "made in Italy" is not your best selling point!
Sunglasses are made in italy
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Sunglasses are made in italy
That's where we source our rose tinted ones!
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... It takes time, though, and money.
...
But it's gonna take money
A whole lotta spending money
It's gonna take plenty of money
To do it right child

It's gonna take time
A whole lot of precious time
It's gonna take patience and time
To do it, to do it, to do it, to do it, to do it,
To do it right


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I don't think most people know where their cars are made, I bet Audi and BMW drivers probably all assume that they're driving a German made car
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I agree with Dave. I don't think it will matter much to the consumer where the car is built, most will never know or care. They will buy the car because it looks awesome and/or it's an Alfa Romeo, which is a sporty Italian brand. The location of the actual plant doesn't figure much in the public mind, we are used to most of our western branded products (electricals and clothing for example) being manufactured n the far east.

Our Kuga was built in Germany
My Brera was built by Pininfarina, not Alfa (okay both Italian and with cache)
The wheels on my Yamaha were from Italy
The electrical components for all of the above are from Germany (mostly)
Didn't make much difference to me buying them, and that's a relatively informed motorist.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Brand View Post
Does it really matter? Most car buyers couldn't care less where their car is made; if you're trying to establish yourself as a "premium" brand maybe "made in Italy" is not your best selling point!
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Sunglasses, shoes, suits,...

...but anyway, they won't move to the US, firstly, Detroit is bankrupt, secondly, the US doesn't have the skills anymore (sold off their manufacturing for profits years ago) and thirdly, the remains of their manufacturing industry is more unionised than Italy.
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The electrical components for all of the above are from Germany (mostly)
Actually, I'd disagree with you there. The components may be branded from a German company, but they are actually produced in Romania, Turkey and China (amongst others)
I did a contract a few years ago for a manufacturer who supplied a variety of car makers (from Aston Martin to Volkswagen) and most of their manufacturing was done outside Western Europe, but for certain brands a final assembly (i.e. putting it in the box) was done in Germany so it could be classed as "Assembled in Germany". Bish, bash, Bosch and the job is done.

...but I can't say who the company is.

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If Ferrari were built in Brazil would you still buy one ?
I thought the whole point of Alfas was that they were Italian I know we all moan a bit about this bit and that bit but would we really still want one if they weren't Italian ?
I thought that was the point
 
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Originally Posted by gibot123 View Post
If Ferrari were built in Brazil would you still buy one ?
I thought the whole point of Alfas was that they were Italian I know we all moan a bit about this bit and that bit but would we really still want one if they weren't Italian ?
I thought that was the point
We tell ourselves they are full of Italian Brio and assembled by passionate, pasta eating Mediterranean Alfisti ............ you mean they're not? lol
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gibot123 View Post
If Ferrari were built in Brazil would you still buy one ?
I thought the whole point of Alfas was that they were Italian I know we all moan a bit about this bit and that bit but would we really still want one if they weren't Italian ?
I thought that was the point
I had to think about this. I do think for me at least that it is important that my Alfa's are built in Italy. No explanation for this reasoning. It is just that way.
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