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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So having purchased new Alfas in both settings....that is Alfa / FIAT studio vs. Alfa / Maserati dealership...I can tell you that the positioning of Alfa should only be in Maserati showrooms... the AURA of class is not in your face...rather I found it to be very subtle and understated....There's a huge distinction between subtle and understated and CHEAP !!

Especially because of the relative product portfolios, Alfa and Maserati are far more compatible...The Ghibli and Giulia, the Levante and the Stelvio, and the Gran Turismo and the 4 C are far more parallel siblings than any of the FIAT offerings are to the Alfas....

Essentially, you feel special when entering the Alfa / Maserati showroom...it is that undertone that is missing from the Alfa / FIAT relationship....Especially when you are trying to define who you are and who you want to be (a chic Italian alternative to the sterile German status quo) why would you not leverage the best possible image if it's there and available to you....I mean the most confounding thing is that where it needs to be the standard (well to do, populated suburbs, of heavily populated urban areas) it's NOT !!! Rather, the Alfa / Maserati dealers tend to be far from the major urban locals where most of the German car buying public can be found....While driving to Germantown Maryland all I saw were large open spaces with driveways full of American and occasional Japanese cars...Very few BMW's, Audis, and Mercs owned by farmers...But go to the "Miracle Mile" in Manhasset (a mini Rodeo Drive) and all you see are Bentley, Rolls, Merc, BMW, and Audi....this is not the group that will parade into an Alfa / FIAT studio...It just ain't gonna happen....Figure out who you are and then figure out who you want to be...Wiser words were never spoken.....D
 

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Just wait until you take your Alfa to a Chrysler service center. And your loaner is a voucher for a Camry at an Enterprise Rent-a-Car.

Would've loved to go to the Maserati instead but they said they don't have an Alfa-certified technician yet.

But yeah, FCA has vastly underestimated how bad some of their dealers can make Alfa look.
 

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I dread this. my local dealer is a joke and the service dept is at a separate Chrysler dealer facility. I will ship the car a fairly long distance to avoid them if I have to. I will chalk it up to cost of ownership. I will not have some dodge hack work on my car. this thread has accidently made me pissed off:(
 

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Brings back memories going back into October and November of 2016. Calling around to various dealerships was an exercise in futility. No one knew whether they were getting an allocation of at least one Quadrifoglio nor were they able to answer any questions about the cars. Sales training for the brand did not start to occur until after the cars had landed at the stores!
 

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I agree, with some caveats. Pairing Alfa with Fiat could be a marketing mistake. I assume they did it to leverage the already existing Fiat dealership network.On the other hand, pairing Alfa's with Fiats does open up a bigger market than would Alfa's sitting at a very upscale Maserati dealership.

My Alfa/Fiat dealer services Alfas in a neighboring Chrysler service center. When I had a leaky tire on my new Alfa they wanted me to wait four days for an appointment. I took it to the local Maserati dealer instead and they fixed it on the spot as a good will thing.
 

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I dread this. my local dealer is a joke and the service dept is at a separate Chrysler dealer facility. I will ship the car a fairly long distance to avoid them if I have to. I will chalk it up to cost of ownership. I will not have some dodge hack work on my car. this thread has accidently made me pissed off:(
I could be wrong, but the people who work on Alfas have to be Alfa certified mechanics. When Alfas are taken to a Dodge dealership for service it is the Alfa dealer doing the actual work. The Alfa dealerships just rent space in the Chrysler shop for their service. The techs are employees of the Alfa dealership. Dodge mechanics do not work on Alfa Romeos as far as I know.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I could be wrong, but the people who work on Alfas have to be Alfa certified mechanics. When Alfas are taken to a Dodge dealership for service it is the Alfa dealer doing the actual work. The Alfa dealerships just rent space in the Chrysler shop for their service. The techs are employees of the Alfa dealership. Dodge mechanics do not work on Alfa Romeos as far as I know.
Your post, inadvertently, states the problem....the lack of clarity...the grey area is something they could have avoided..I get the foot traffic advantage at FIAT (but if the wrong feet are walking in, what good is that) and I get the fact that FIAT dealers needed product (why not create an inexpensive 4 door FIAT sedan to rival the CIVICs and Corollas of the world) but the lack of forethought here is obvious...
 
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Ideally, grouping Alfa with Maserati is the smart thing to do. Grouping Alfa with Fiat and then sending you to a Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge service center is not. Getting a Dodge Journey as a loaner is wrong. Shady service departments are another. I had an experience when I paid $350 to have curb rash removed from two wheels. I took the car back and it looked like the dealer tried to sand them himself. I went back pissed and the second time they were done by a wheel refinisher.
 
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But yeah, FCA has vastly underestimated how bad some of their dealers can make Alfa look.
This. Within the past 12 months my sales dealer moved their FIAT store to the blue collar side of town and opened up a combined Maserati/Alfa showroom in the old FIAT location. However, they did not redesign the place when they made this change, there are no nice customer waiting areas, no private sales offices, no clothing/accessories on display for purchase, no artwork, no customer lounge areas, no WiFi, no TVs, no coffee table picture books celebrating these two storied brands, no sales brochures, the service area is old and dirty, etc. More importantly, every department within this dealership that I interacted with over a period of 2 months performed poorly.

So it doesn't matter that they sell Maseratis next to Alfas when the whole place is shenanigans. In fact, I'd be even more pissed off had I made the giant mistake of buying a $150k Maserati from them. They are simply operating it like a Chrysler/Jeep dealership from the 1990s, which isn't going to fly in today's day and age trying to sell a premium product. Clearly there is a large standard deviation among Alfa dealers. I got a flat tire on a road trip recently and my experience at another Alfa dealer was much better even though they were a much smaller outfit.
 

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I think it's the dealer which has to be on target for its market, not so much the brand. Here in Ann Arbor, for example, it's Alfa/Fiat, and the fact we don't have a Maserati dealership here, I think the pitch as "boutique" rather than "luxury" or "exclusivity" is the right one for this market.

But also by pricepoint, Alfa's meat-and-potatoes Giulia is closer to Chrysler 300 than a Maserati Ghibli, so there's that, too. A Dodge Challenger GT AWD runs $38k. Ghibli's start at $73k.
 
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So having purchased new Alfas in both settings....that is Alfa / FIAT studio vs. Alfa / Maserati dealership...I can tell you that the positioning of Alfa should only be in Maserati showrooms... the AURA of class is not in your face...rather I found it to be very subtle and understated....There's a huge distinction between subtle and understated and CHEAP !!

Especially because of the relative product portfolios, Alfa and Maserati are far more compatible...The Ghibli and Giulia, the Levante and the Stelvio, and the Gran Turismo and the 4 C are far more parallel siblings than any of the FIAT offerings are to the Alfas....

Essentially, you feel special when entering the Alfa / Maserati showroom...it is that undertone that is missing from the Alfa / FIAT relationship....Especially when you are trying to define who you are and who you want to be (a chic Italian alternative to the sterile German status quo) why would you not leverage the best possible image if it's there and available to you....I mean the most confounding thing is that where it needs to be the standard (well to do, populated suburbs, of heavily populated urban areas) it's NOT !!! Rather, the Alfa / Maserati dealers tend to be far from the major urban locals where most of the German car buying public can be found....While driving to Germantown Maryland all I saw were large open spaces with driveways full of American and occasional Japanese cars...Very few BMW's, Audis, and Mercs owned by farmers...But go to the "Miracle Mile" in Manhasset (a mini Rodeo Drive) and all you see are Bentley, Rolls, Merc, BMW, and Audi....this is not the group that will parade into an Alfa / FIAT studio...It just ain't gonna happen....Figure out who you are and then figure out who you want to be...Wiser words were never spoken.....D
100% spot-on. But, the Alfa issue is even worse in many parts of the nation. Imagine if your dealership was an Alfa attached to the pre-owned Dodge, Chrysler, Jeep dealer. Then, imagine what the level of service buying the vehicle when the salesperson admits he does not know anything about the competition and "relies on the customers to tell him." And, imagine issues with repairs when the Service Adviser has no clue what you are telling him/her, writes down incorrect instructions to the Tech, and the "Alfa Tech" is likely a guy who spends 99% of his time on pre-owned Dodge/Jeep vehicles and is similarly clueless. Not fair to the tech or the customer Alfa has set itself up for failure by doing this. FCA is a train-wreck of an organization.
 

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Just wait until you take your Alfa to a Chrysler service center. And your loaner is a voucher for a Camry at an Enterprise Rent-a-Car.

Would've loved to go to the Maserati instead but they said they don't have an Alfa-certified technician yet.

But yeah, FCA has vastly underestimated how bad some of their dealers can make Alfa look.
I think FCA does not care. They tried to push this out way to fast, with incompetent leaders. This is not difficult: visit the dealers PRIOR to giving them a franchise. Have "mystery shoppers" get service, buy a vehicle, etc.

But even now (the article is a year old, wish I saw this before getting mine) the issues are systemic.

http://www.autonews.com/article/20170222/BLOG06/170229952/fcas-quality-woes-are-systemic
 

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I dread this. my local dealer is a joke and the service dept is at a separate Chrysler dealer facility. I will ship the car a fairly long distance to avoid them if I have to. I will chalk it up to cost of ownership. I will not have some dodge hack work on my car. this thread has accidently made me pissed off:(
The closest one to me is another Dodge dealer. I just picked mine up last night from my incompetent dealer. This threat has been cathartic for me.
 

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I agree, with some caveats. Pairing Alfa with Fiat could be a marketing mistake. I assume they did it to leverage the already existing Fiat dealership network.On the other hand, pairing Alfa's with Fiats does open up a bigger market than would Alfa's sitting at a very upscale Maserati dealership.

My Alfa/Fiat dealer services Alfas in a neighboring Chrysler service center. When I had a leaky tire on my new Alfa they wanted me to wait four days for an appointment. I took it to the local Maserati dealer instead and they fixed it on the spot as a good will thing.
Is your Maserati dealer affiliated with Alfa in any way. Or did they just take care of you? There is a Maserati dealer opening up near where I live, and I'm hopeful I can take my Alfa there, even though it's not an Alfa dealer. LOVE the car, hate that I can't get the most basic things fixed.
 

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I could be wrong, but the people who work on Alfas have to be Alfa certified mechanics. When Alfas are taken to a Dodge dealership for service it is the Alfa dealer doing the actual work. The Alfa dealerships just rent space in the Chrysler shop for their service. The techs are employees of the Alfa dealership. Dodge mechanics do not work on Alfa Romeos as far as I know.
Or, it could be a Dodge mechanic that the Dodge dealer sent to the week training session to become an Alfa mechanic. So, yeah, it's an Alfa mechanic who may see a few Alfa's a week, but by and large, works on Dodge's and that is where the tech's skill-set is.
 

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Is your Maserati dealer affiliated with Alfa in any way. Or did they just take care of you? There is a Maserati dealer opening up near where I live, and I'm hopeful I can take my Alfa there, even though it's not an Alfa dealer. LOVE the car, hate that I can't get the most basic things fixed.
They know me, so I think they did it as a favor. I was complaining to them that I had to wait a week to get my tire fixed by the Alfa dealer and they said that was ridiculous, just bring it over and they would fix it.
 

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Dealers are definitely a minus for Alfa brand at the moment but think for a second about how you would enter such a big market without throwing tons of money at it that you dont have....this is a long game and on a short run there will be losers and pissed off customers...

Alfa had to make compromises to keep cost under control while managing the damage...and things are already changing after a year and basically solid sales for a little known brand in US...my dealer is now also Alfa/Maseratti after being Fiat/Alfa....things will continue to improve....I am pretty sure FCA is in this on a long run....if anything they should get rid of Fiat in US since Fiat does not have beside more iconic models like 500 or Spider anything to offer to really compete with Japanese econoboxes....and it seems to me thats exactly what is happening, Fiat provided foothold for Alfa dealers but will slowly have to bow out of US market...if Alfa continues the growth more dealerships will also open...

How many remember that Audis used to be sold in crappy VW dealerships...it took Audi at least 10 years to make a strong foothold in this market...

Entering this market succesfully is short of a miracle for a maker with no or little presence....many european brands have failed miserably (Peugeot, Citroen etc..) and early buyer of newly entered brand always pay some sort of price for it.

Being Italians also doesnt help really in that aspect.....the latin way of doing things can be very poetic and passionate but can resemble organized chaos more often than not....thats why I was and remain of opinion that Alfa will never be able to go neck to neck with Germans or Japanese in organizing sales, support and service.....ok ok, I will get my coat:)
 

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I would prefer going to a Alfa / Maserati dealership but at the end of the day for service, whatever dealer is the closest and if they have weekend hours matters most to me.
 

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I remember when Audi was sold side by side with Volkswagen....and frankly they still are at some dealers in my parts...though many now have separated the two....
Alfa's issues go deeper than that, what they should have done, could have done, and needed to do was train the techs that were going to service the car...period...so that when the initial bugs showed and if ANYONE thought that a 1st run, all-new platform car was not going to have bugs & QC issues pass along what you are smoking, these could have been addressed faster and with better results....also how about sending some parts over with the first batch...simple stuff like sensors and what not, body parts aren't the be all end all. but most fixes will involve little stuff that can muck up the works...if you don;t want to send them, then make sure you over night them and bite the bullet.
the physical plant of the dealers can be addressed as sales grow....but having the ability to work on these cars, especially the QV, can't wait...and for that Alfa shiit the bed...
I remember when I had a 91 Mitsubishi 3000 GT VR4, (bought in a moment of weakness) the dealer had the car in the service garage under cover.
I had to wait 2 weeks until the 2 techs he sent to Oakland CA (on his dime) passed the training program to work on the 3000GT otherwise he could not sell the car! what does Alfa do??, bring guys down to NOLA for a launch party and let them drive the cars....LOL

I love my QV, it is hands down one of the best cars I've ever owned or driven, track or otherwise. When it is on(and fortunately it has been 100% spot-on since bringing it to the right caretakers) it is sublime & a sledgehammer at the same time. BUT I am scared shiitless to be caught in a place with no Ferrari/Maserati/Alfa dealer around to service this animal.....
 

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I hear you MDriver. And I wonder when I might be able to go back to FoNE and ask my service rep there if they got the OK to service Alfas despite the Fiat/Maser breakdown. Central Alfa has been good overall but the feeling I got at service when I stopped to have the steering wheel scuffs checked wasn't great. But then again, it was easily handled by an upholstery pro at the Alfa shop proper, and what I was seeing may have been pure "warranty headache." The department also had thick glass windows like an urban bank. But it IS the big FCA dealership on the automile. I love my Quad too. Practically a limosine with Ferrari performance and not too big. Wonderful.
 
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