Alfa Romeo’s sports car revival is over before it began.
The storied Italian brand announced in 2018 that it would bring back the GTV coupe and 8C sports car but the recent merger between Alfa Romeo’s parent company, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and PSA Group of France, appears to have scuppered those plans.
Speaking to investors in the wake of the merger, FCA chief executive officer Mike Manley announced those cars have been cut to prioritise more compact SUVs.
It’s a major blow for Alfa Romeo fans with both cars already teased with some tempting specifications.
The 8C was going to feature a carbon fibre monocoque, as well as a mid-mounted twin-turbo engine making more than 520kW. The GTV was expected to be based on the impressive Giulia with its Ferrari-derived twin-turbo V6 engine boosted by a hybrid system.
It means the Guilia Quadrifoglio sports sedan will remain the brand’s flagship car as it tries to re-establish itself as a true rival to Germany’s Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz.
While the sports cars would have been relatively low-volume, it would have been a clear signal of the FCA’s intent to return Alfa Romeo to its glory days.
Instead the brand will focus on the more profitable, but less glamorous, compact SUV market.
At the same time it cut the GTV and 8C it announced plans for a new small SUV that will launch in 2022 to compete against the likes of the Audi Q3.
It will join the already announced Tonale, which will rival the Audi Q2, and is due to arrive in 2021.