Alfa Romeo – Italian luxury car brand leaves its mark on Philippines
Alfa Romeo also known as Alfa Romeo Automobiles S p A is a leading luxury car manufacturing company based in Italy. It was founded on 24th June 1910 and has its headquarters in Milan, Italy. It has a huge customer base spread all over the world. According to a survey conducted in 2012, Alfa Romeo had an annual production output of about 101,000 units. It is a well known car brand in all major motor racing circuits all over the world and is now a distinguished subsidiary division of luxury auto industry conglomerate Fiat Group Automobiles S p A.
Alfa Romeo was initially established by Alexandre Darraq in 1906 as the leading French automobile company "Societa Anonima Italiana Darraq (SAID)" with Ugo Stella being appointed as chairman in 1909. It had its headquarters in Naples but was gradually shifted to Milan in Portello. Later in 1909 Stella with support from other Italian investors established a new company "Anonima Lombardo Fabbrica Automobili (ALFA)". ALFA cars fitted with very powerful, and high-performance engines designed by Giuseppe Merosi in order to make the brand more suitable for its native Italian market.
Military usage & Government acquisition
In 1915, Nicola Romeo, a renowned engineer & entrepreneur, was appointed the Chairman of ALFA. He transformed the company into producing military vehicles & equipment which were used extensively in World War I. Its name was changed to "Alfa Romeo" in 1920 with Torpedo being the first car to be marketed under this brand. However, due to a major economic crisis in 1921, Banca Italiana di Sconto, a leading investor in Alfa Romeo went bankrupt, and the company was put under supervision of the Italian government according to "Consorzio per Sovvenzioni sui Valori Industriali".
Acquisition by Fiat
After Nicola Romeo's departure in 1928, the company was reorganized under active directions of the Benito Mussolini government as "Istituto per la Ricotruzione Industriale (IRI)" into producing smaller vehicles in place of luxury cars. It developed the Alfa Romeo Twin Cam Engine in 1945 which had its trademark design and was in production till 1994. Despite efforts from the Italian government, Alfa Romeo's profits dwindled post World War II, and it was eventually sold to Fiat Group Automobile in 1986. Its name was eventually changed to "Alfa Romeo Automobiles S p A" in February 2007 and was officially established as a subsidiary division of Fiat Group Automobiles S p A.
Alfa Romeo is currently managed by Company President John Jacob Philip Elkann and Chief Executive Officer Harald J Wester under the direct supervision of Fiat S p A management team headed by Chief Executive Officer & Executive Director Serigo Marchionne and Chief Financial Officer Richard Keith Palmer. John Elkann has also been appointed as Chairman of Fiat S p A with Harald J Wester also appointed as Chief Technology Officer.
Alfa Romeo's product lineup consists of a variety of exclusive & premium luxury car models including Sports Utility Vehicles, Station Wagons, Sedans and Coupes, etc. Alfa Romeo Philippines offers many such luxury car models to its Filipino customers which consist of Alfa Romeo GTV, Brera 2.2 JTS, Berlina, 147 GTA, Guilia Sprint GTA, etc. Other notable models in production from 2000 - 2010 include 8C Competizione, 8C Spider, GT, 159, Spider etc. Its race car lineup consists of high-performance models such as 155 GTA, GTV Cup, 155 V6 TI, 156 D2, 156 GTA Super 2000, 156 Super 2000, 147 GTA Cup, etc. Other light commercial vehicles consist of Romeo, Romeo 2, Romeo 3, A11, A12, AR8, AR6, F20; trucks include Alfa Romeo 50, 85, 350, etc.
Alfa Romeo started its motorsports venture in 1911 at the Targa Floroi Competition and has tasted huge success at motor sports circuits all over the world including events like Mille Miglia, Le Mans and many more. It had also participated in mainstream Formula One races, Touring, Prototypes and Fast Touring races. Alfa Romeo has worked with many world-class drivers including Tazio Nuvolari who scored a brilliant triumph at 1935 Grand Prix held in Nurburgring in Germany.
Alfa Romeo Philippines markets its products through dealerships owned by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. Major Fiat Chrysler dealership showrooms are located in San Juan (Metro Manila), Makati City (Metro Manila) and Alabang (Muntinlupa City).