Alfa Romeo's return to North America has been delayed at least a half year partly because Fiat-Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne is not satisfied with the design of the cars that will lead the brand's comeback in the crucial market, people with direct knowledge of the matter told Automotive News Europe.
The delay also is a serious blow to Alfa in Europe because without the Giulia mid-sized sedan and station wagon the automaker will have one of the weakest premium brand lineups in Europe.
Alfa parent Fiat S.p.A. has pushed back the arrival of the Giulia models to mid-2013 from late 2012, the sources said. They blamed the delay on manufacturing and styling issues with the cars, adding that Marchionne was not pleased with proposals he has seen from Alfa's creative team in Turin.
A Fiat spokesman declined to comment when asked about the delay.