Automotive News Europe has a story where VW’s CEO, Martin Winerkorn, warns Fiat’s CEO Sergio Marchionne that the dream he’s chasing will take years to come to fruition, if it does at all.
Volkswagen AG CEO Martin Winterkorn warns that it will not be easy for Fiat to create another global auto giant.
“I think (Fiat CEO) Sergio Marchionne is trying to increase volumes to lower costs and to survive through (alliances with) Chrysler and possibly Opel, but I wonder if he will be able to succeed because successfully managing several brands and obtaining true synergies is really difficult,” Winterkorn said…..
…..As head of VW group, Winterkorn oversees seven different brands — Audi, Bentley, Bugatti, Lamborghini, Seat, Skoda and VW — as well as truckmaker Scania.
He said that creating money-saving, performance-enhancing relationships between brands takes years.
Now, it should be said that it’s in Winterkorn’s interests to put the mozza on Fiat’s efforts. Fiat will become VW’s biggest European rival if Serj succeeds. But what he’s saying is true.
If I can chip in my own two cents here…..
Some have said that what Fiat are trying to do is not what GM tried, because they’re smaller, more focused and better organised. My problem with that is that if Marchionne pulls this off, then Fiat is going to have eight brands to deal with (Fiat, Alfa, Lancia, Chrysler, Dodge, Opel, Vauxhall and Saab – Ferrari and Maserati will not be spun into the new enterprise) and he’ll have a three separate corporate cultures to try and mould together.
Eight brands and a cultural mess? Sounds exactly like GM to me.
This cartoon appeared in the The Time in the UK today.
Sent in by Dave R (G’day Dave!!!)
Click to enlarge.
And finally, I spotted these photochops on Flickr.
They appear to come from a guy named Theophilus Chin, a self-described automotive manipulator. He describes this as Saab’s version of the Chevy Volt, the link to which is fairly evident and well executed.
TC’s website’s worth a look for those interested in car photochops.
Again, click to enlarge.