Alfa Romeo, Maserati and Abarth are three brands that the Fiat Group has ambitious plans for in the U.S. so it's not surprising to hear that all three are likely to be grouped together and run under the same leadership.
Most readers would be familiar with the Alfa Romeo and Maserati brands but Abarth is something relatively new, at least here in the U.S. Abarth is the performance and racing arm for Fiat and is responsible for a hotted up version of the 500 minicar that will be sold in local showrooms around the end of the year.
According to people familiar with Fiat's plan, Harald J. Wester, who is currently CEO of Maserati and Abarth, will head the new Alfa Romeo, Maserati and Abarth division. His role will be primarily to identify synergies between Maserati and the loss-making Alfa Romeo, and this could possibly lead to Alfa Romeo's first models being sold in Maserati dealerships across the country.
Turning around the Alfa Romeo brand will be a tough task for Wester but there are currently two options being investigated. One is to stop all future investment for Alfa Romeo and just focus on selling the MiTo and upcoming Giulietta hatchbacks, and the other is to use two different Chrysler platforms to underpin replacements for the 159 and 166 sedans in the respective D- and E-segments.
Alfa Romeo's current CEO, Sergio Cravero, is expected to be transferred to another division within the expanding Fiat Group.
[Automotive News, sub req'd]