Alfa Romeo Outsells Volvo and Jaguar

Coeur d’ Alene is a small sleepy city in north Idaho with a population of about 50,000 people. It’s nestled between mountains and a large alpine lake and serves as a summer playground for boating enthusiasts and a winter wonderland for ski bunnies. Its downtown is lined with mom-and-pop shops and locally owned restaurants.

Not much happens in Coeur d’ Alene, but it’s a popular escape from the crowds of Southern California and Western Washington. Aside from the mansions lining the lake, there’s no real indication that Coeur d’ Alene is a city with money. In fact, driving through town suggests quite the opposite.

So you can imagine my surprise when I drove by a dealership, in a part of town surrounded by convenience stores and fast-food joints, lined with row after row of Maseratis and Alfa Romeos.

You know those large Toyota dealers in big urban areas that are packed with acres of cars? That’s how this dealership looked. It was an exceptionally out-of-place sight and left me wondering why all those cars are there and who’s buying them.

I looked to Google for the answer. Continue reading >>>

Back to the Well: When Automakers Reuse Brand Names

Eclipse Cross

Inspiration often comes from within. For automakers, it can even come from within their own model lineups. Mitsubishi recently announced the unveiling of an all-new Mitsubishi Eclipse…crossover. That’s right, Mitsubishi isn’t resurrecting the Eclipse you knew and loved from the ‘90s, but rather attaching the brand to the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross, a compact crossover aimed to address a market not captured by the midsize Mitsubishi Outlander. The original Eclipse was produced for 22 years—vailable in its Eclipse Spyder convertible variant for 15 of those—before being discontinued in 2012 due to a shifting focus at Mitsubishi. Continue reading >>>

Alfa Romeo Brings Italian Style, Craftmanship, to U.S. Buyers

2015-alfaromeogiuliaqv-01

Get ready, because there are a lot of words coming your way that you’ll probably have no idea how to pronounce. Alfa and Romeo don’t present much of a problem, but some you might stumble on include Giulia, Internazionale, and Quadrifoglio.

We’re talking, of course, about Alfa Romeo’s new lineup of the Giulia midsize sedan, which will finally be available for purchase in the United States. We will get the base Giulia trim, the Giulia Ti, and the top-of-the-line Giulia Quadrifoglio.

Prices start at reasonable levels, but the Quadrifoglio will be as hard to afford as it is to say.

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Alfa Romeo’s U.S. Comeback Back On, Probably

alfa-romeo-giulia

Maybe this time will be different.

Alfa Romeo has promised a full-fledged return to the U.S. market, but so far all we’ve received is the 8C Competizione (in ultra-low numbers), the 4C sports car, and a bunch of broken promises.

We are supposed to receive a host of sedans, an SUV, and other vehicles that amount to a full line of products. It’s a promise we’ve heard for many years, but one that has yet to materialize.

Once again we’re hearing word that Alfa Romeo is on the verge of bringing two important vehicles to the market here, but what are the odds that they’ll actually arrive?

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10 Cars Fit for Super Bowl 50

Super Bowl 50 logo

This weekend will cap the 2015 NFL football season with one of television’s most watched events: the Super Bowl. The 50th edition of this great American sporting event pits Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos against Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. Manning’s a veteran, having won and taken the MVP title for Super Bowl XLI as well as five Associated Press NFL MVP titles since entering the league in 1998. Cam Newton’s younger, having entered the league in 2011, but he’s got some impressive stats, too, and he’s our bet to win the MVP award this year. Fittingly, each quarterback was the first pick in the NFL draft the year they entered the league.

Because we’re huge fans of cars in addition to football, we’ve decided to turn this year’s Super Bowl into a car contest in addition to a football game. We’ve selected five critical players from each team and picked a car to represent each of those players. We’d be happy to see what you think of our picks as well as which one of each pair of cars you would select – please let us know in a comment. We hope you’ve already voted in our poll on the game itself, of course, and seen the best and worst car ads that will be shown during this year’s game. Since our local Patriots didn’t make it to the big game this year, we’ll likely be much quieter while watching it than we were last year, but we’ll certainly have a good time, and we hope you will, too.

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Can Alfa Romeo Finally Take On BMW?

Alfa Romeo Giulia

Alfa Romeo is the unicorn of the United States automotive market. For years we’ve heard rumors of its existence, but very few people here have ever actually seen one.

That has started to change with the arrival of the 4C, but it’s still a rare beast that most people won’t ever see, much less own.

A rare car isn’t a great platform to build a comeback on, so the Italian automaker wants to introduce a slew of performance vehicles overseas and hopefully in the U.S. to try and turn Alfa from a rare unicorn to a ubiquitous presence. Is there room for another competitor to BMW and Mercedes-Benz?

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Alfa Romeo Giulia: Hard to Say, Easy to Love

alfa_romeo_giulia

I have mixed emotions about the arrival of the Alfa Romeo Giulia in the United States.

On one hand, it’s one of the biggest moments in the history of cars in this country. On the other hand, the Pagani Huayra is no longer the hardest car name for me to spell and pronounce. If this thing takes off, I’m going to have to commit the spelling to memory.

Darn you, Giulia.

Thank you, Giulia.

Alfa Romeo this week has revealed its all-new, highly anticipated, Giulia sedan for the world to admire. It’s something special, even if you never figure out how to say it.

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Design Woes Keep Alfa Romeo from U.S. Until 2013

2009 Alfa Romeo MiTo

Alfa Romeo MiTo

In the past, Chrysler designers could draw up a vehicle of questionable design, get it signed off by management, see it hit the production lines and then watch it languish on dealer lots.

The fact that the cars sold only to retirees and rental companies was a job for the marketing department, not the designers.

Thankfully for everyone, those days are ending, thanks to a harsh CEO who expects nothing less than greatness and won’t accept another sub-par design.

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