Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: South Africa
What is happening to Alfa Romeo in South Africa?
It is really sad to see Alfa Romeo being shoved into a little corner and forgotten about and the head of FAGASA referring to AR as "a nostalgic badge". The reason AR is shoved into a corner is because Chrysler are selling them. They are far more interested in selling Chryslers than Alfa Romeo which reminds me of the time when Schus Nissan was selling Alfas here in South AFrica. NO interest shown.
In South Africa, the 159 has plummeted in value due to the head of FAGASA throwing a fantastico sale and dropping the 159 3.2 Ti by R155 000...which meant the cars went on sale for R300 000. Now any one that has a 159, '06 or newer feels duped and will now not get any value for that cars they have should they want to trade the car in or sell it out of hand to buy another Alfa. Then, at another interval I saw an advert on Gumtree SA for Alfa 159’s on auction and the reason was overstock.
My case in point is this. Last year March 2012, I purchased an '06 159 Q4 for R179 000 second hand with just under 80 000km's on it. I went in to Arnold Chatz, where I had originally bought the car just over a year later and asked how much they would give me for a trade in on a pre-owned Giulietta QV. They offered me roughly R80 000. I was astounded.
From what I hear, FAGASA is happy with the current volume of AR and FIAT’s being sold which only tells me that there is no real push to market the “nostalgic badge” properly which will eventually mean that AR will once again, pull out of South Africa as they are not selling any vehicles. The MiTo does not sell any more and the Giulietta’s sales are not going so well either. FIAT/AR need to do something drastic and the 4C might help things a little but not everyone can afford a car with a price tag of R800 000.
The Alfa and FIAT dealerships are now being forced to sell Chryslers from their floor as well which they do not want to do or are being forced to close their doors, but, FAGASA do not seem to worried about this AT ALL plus it seems as though Chrysler dealerships are popping up everywhere which will force privately owned AR and FIAT dealerships again to close their doors.
The resale value of Alfa will drop and there will be no value in the cars anymore. Maybe I should just sell my car out of hand and buy myself a nice ’79 Alfetta GT and get a little FIAT 500 as a runabout…
I have also noticed that the European and British Alfa Romeo market have MUCH more on offer than what the South African AR market does. The Brera and Brera Spider were dropped from the SA market so when the revamped Brera/Spider/159 range came out, SA only got the 159's. No Sport Wagons though. The accessories and options for add-ons on the AR model range are MUCH nicer with a MUCH wider range than the limited offering South Africa has/gets. For example: the MiTo QV in the UK has proper racing seats in it like the FIAT Punto ABARTH, but here in SA, it has normal seats. Unfortunately South Africa gets given the dregs of the market as we are not so important….that being as it is…there is a HUGE AR following here in South Africa and I know this as I am a member of both AROSA (Alfa Romeo Owners South Africa) and CARC (Cape Alfa Romeo Club) of which I revamped the CARC’s website a little while back.
What is happening to/with Alfa Romeo and why do certain markets get neglected when there is a massive following in the market that is getting neglected?