Maserati is such an iconic name in the automotive world. When you think of the brand and all the cars it has created, many words come to mind: luxury, speed, power, and – price. Perhaps, proving too pricey for some. While consumers who are looking to buy a Maserati fully expect and brace for the price, the fact remains that these vehicles aren’t accessible to everyone. That’s not supposed to sound negative, it’s just the reality of the situation. A lesser known fact might be that FCA (Fiat Chrysler Automobiles) is the parent company of Maserati, and it could be selling the brand in the near future.
Why? Let’s take a look.
A Debt-Free FCA
It’s no secret that Maserati has a rocky history, thanks to a range of issues, including financial setbacks, model delays, recalls, and just good old-fashioned bad luck. The point is, Maserati has been through a lot. This means FCA, has had to continuously bail Maserati out time and time again, and put more money put into saving this trident brand, rather than in the increased production of other Ram, Dodge, and Chrysler vehicles.
With Sergio Marchionne planning to retire in 2018, and wanting to leave FCA profitable and debt free, selling Maserati might just be the way to do it.
How Would That Work?
This isn’t just ungrounded speculation. Numerous sources cite what analysts have been saying about the financial state of the FCA, and how Maserati could be the key to ridding the company of debt.
An analyst with the Berenberg Bank, for example, said the sale of Maserati alone could net anywhere from $3.6 billion to $4.8 billion. That’s a lot of money, and that sale alone is enough to offset most of FCA’s debt. That analyst then goes on to say that if the FCA sold Magneti Marelli (a parts division of the company), the sale would bring in anywhere between another $2.3 billion to $3.7 billion. Samsung has (supposedly) already shown interest in the parts division, so at least the FCA has that going for it.
The FCA could also sell Alfa Romeo to help with this debt, but that doesn’t make sense, given its recent investment in two high-volume models: the Giulia sedan and Stelio SUV, both of which are players designed to revive Alfa Romeo as a mainstream brand.
It All Adds Up, Sadly
For Maserati, things aren’t going as smoothly. It all adds up, unfortunately. With the release of the Levante SUV, this is going to be the last major release until around 2020. Especially since the brand has already said it plans to take a sports car hiatus of sorts, with new production of its well-loved sports car models delayed until around 2020 or so. On top of that, the new electric vehicle Maserati has been looking to put out might get pushed back again. Instead of being released in 2020, recent issues have caused many to think we’ll see another delay on that as well.
Things just aren’t going well for the brand, and it, unfortunately, only lends credibility to the various analytical statements about Sergio selling Maserati, so he can leave the FCA debt free.