Alfa Romeo is on a roll. The Italian luxury brand posted a remarkable 134% increase in sales in the first nine months of 2023 compared to the same period last year. This is the best result for Alfa Romeo since 2008 when it sold 203,000 vehicles worldwide.
The main driver of this growth is the Alfa Romeo Tonale, the brand's first plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV), and its entry into the compact SUV segment. The Alfa Romeo Tonale was launched in Europe in March 2023 and has received rave reviews from critics and customers alike. It combines Alfa Romeo's signature style and performance with a high-tech powertrain that delivers up to 270 horsepower and 50 kilometers of electric range.
The Tonale has also helped Alfa Romeo expand its presence in new markets, such as China, where it sold over 10,000 units in the first half of 2023. The Tonale is expected to arrive in the US market by the end of 2023, where it will compete with rivals such as the Audi Q3, BMW X1, and Mercedes-Benz GLA.
Another factor behind Alfa Romeo's success is the Alfa Romeo Giulia, the brand's flagship sedan that was refreshed in 2022 with new features and options. The Alfa Romeo Giulia offers a sporty and elegant design, a refined interior, and a range of engines that include a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with 280 horsepower and a 2.9-liter twin-turbocharged V6 with 505 horsepower.
The Alfa Romeo Giulia is also available as a mild hybrid (MHEV) version that reduces fuel consumption and emissions by up to 10%. The MHEV system uses a belt-driven starter-generator (BSG) that recovers energy during braking and coasting and stores it in a 48-volt battery. The BSG can also provide an extra boost of power during acceleration and restart the engine smoothly after a stop.
The third pillar of Alfa Romeo's portfolio is the Alfa Romeo Stelvio, the brand's first SUV that was launched in 2017. The Stelvio shares the same platform and engines as the Giulia but offers more space and versatility for families and adventurers. The Stelvio was also updated in 2022 with new colors, wheels, and an infotainment system. The Stelvio is one of the best-selling models for Alfa Romeo in the US market, where it accounts for more than half of its sales.
Alfa Romeo's upward trend is not only driven by its products but also by its strategy and vision. The brand is part of Stellantis, the world's fourth-largest automaker that was formed by the merger of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) and Peugeot S.A. (PSA) in January 2021. Stellantis has given Alfa Romeo more resources and support to develop its future models and technologies.
One of these models is the Alfa Romeo Brennero, which will be Alfa Romeo's second PHEV and its smallest SUV. The Brennero will be based on the same platform as the Fiat 500X and Jeep Renegade but will have a distinctive Alfa Romeo identity and character. The Brennero will target younger urban customers who want stylish and eco-friendly vehicles. The Alfa Romeo Brennero will be unveiled in late 2023 and will go on sale in early 2024.
Alfa Romeo is also working on its next-generation models that will use a new modular platform that will be shared with other Stellantis brands. The platform will be flexible and scalable, allowing Alfa Romeo to create different body styles and sizes and powertrains, including hybrid, electric, and hydrogen. The platform will also enable Alfa Romeo to enhance its performance, efficiency, safety, and connectivity.
Alfa Romeo is a brand with a rich history and a passionate fan base. It is also a brand with a bright future and bold ambition. Alfa Romeo wants to become one of the leading players in the luxury market, offering vehicles that combine beauty and technology, emotion and innovation, heritage and vision. Alfa Romeo's upward trend continues unabated, and it is only the beginning of a new era for the legendary Italian brand.