It’s no secret that Volkswagen Group Chairman Ferdinand Piech wants to add Alfa Romeo as an eleventh automotive brand to his company’s already formidable stable that includes the likes of Audi, Bugatti, and Lamborghini. In the spirit of a soap opera, Piech says that he can wait until Fiat stumbles, but design director Walter de’ Silva says he is ready and waiting for his “secret love.”
“If Piëch gets Alfa, we are ready,” de’ Silva, who once worked for Alfa, told Automotive News in an interview at the Paris Motor Show. “We have a number of great brands [within the VW group], but Alfa has always been my secret love — and even my wife is no longer jealous about this.”
Volkswagen’s head designer isn’t the only one ready to take on Alfa Romeo. Piëch’s plan to improve Alfa Romeo has reportedly made it as far as a preliminary model lineup, complete with three-dimensional mockups.
De’ Silva’s desire and Piëch’s plan may have to wait, however, as Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne has repeatedly said he has no intention of selling Alfa Romeo. The timeframe required for the Porsche-Volkswagen merger is evidence of Piëch’s persistence, and he says he’s willing to wait until Fiat collapses.
“We are patient and have time…you won’t hear anything in the next two years,” Piëch told Reuters. A VW executive previously told us that “if one of his [Marchionne's] key plans falters, we will be there to pick up the pieces.”
“Let them wait,” Marchionne countered at the Paris Motor Show.