Lancia Disappears to Italian Market Only
Being a die-hard Lancia fan has become akin to following a struggling sports team. You can remember the glory days, but the here-and-now is too difficult to watch. Fiat has effectively begun the funeral dirge for its iconic Italian sub-brand with a new round of cutbacks set to take place over the next two years. Sergio Marchionne, CEO of Fiat SpA, announced that the Lancia nameplate will be reduced to a single model, the Ypsilon subcompact, offered for sale only in Italy. Sales of the $32,000 Delta are expected to end after this year, with Chrysler’s rebadged Voyager minivan exiting showrooms at the end of 2015. The decision follows-up on Fiat’s strategy to cut losses in Europe and increase global profitability. Marchionne has earmarked $75 billion in advancement across the group, but Lancia drew the short straw due to limited international recognition outside of Europe. RELATED: See More Photos of the 2014 Lancia Ypsilon
However, the Ypsilon does make a case for its survival. The model remains a strong seller and shares its platform with the Fiat Panda, Fiat 500, and Ford Ka; making it a reasonably inexpensive option to keep around. However, it’s a far cry from the extravagant Fulvia, Stratos, and Delta HF road cars of years past.
Luckily for Lancia fans, there still is some hope. Sources at Bloomberg expect Marchionne to keep the brand around temporarily, at least until Alfa Romeo’s sales strategy plays out. It certainly isn’t the end-all for beloved Lancia.
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