As quickly as that particular rumor surfaced, Daimler stepped in with a flat denial of interest in Ducati. Next, Audi’s name came up in conversation, and the German automaker is believed to have entered a serious bid for the Italian brand.
That doesn’t sit well with Lapo Elkann, the brother of Fiat chairman John Elkann and possible future head of Ferrari. As quoted in Italy’s La Voce, Lapo Elkann considers himself a patriot, and would entertain a bid for Ducati simply to keep the brand from falling into foreign hands.
The stumbling block, apparently, is the exorbitant asking price of Ducati, reported to be one billion euros ($1.33 billion). As Elkann explained to magazine Panorama Icon, he “could really think of coming forward with an offer,” if only Ducati management lowered their demands.
The highly-visible Elkann may be best known for his camouflage-painted Ferrari 458 Italia. While Elkann is head of Ferrari’s Tailor-Made program, he’s also quick to point out that the program doesn’t extend to camouflage paint schemes on new Ferraris.
In his own words, “I want to stress that the military-style Ferrari is not part of the Tailor-Made world, but it is a small piece of madness that I wanted to allow myself. It’s simply Lapo’s car.”