According to Automotive News, Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne predicted global annual Giulia sales of 75,000 to 100,000 units, but from May 2016 through to April 2017, just 18,908 units in Europe. The vehicle launched in North America at a later date, so annual sales figures aren’t yet available, but if sales in a market where Alfa Romeo already has brand cache are at just 18,000 units, it’s not likely the remaining 55,000 vehicles will come from the U.S. where some customers aren’t even sure what an Alfa Romeo is.
With the Giulia off to a slow start, it puts a lot of pressure on the Stelvio to hit the ground running this year. It’s much more likely the Stelvio will deliver on expectations than the Giulia. Sedan sales have been dwindling for years and taking their place in consumer’s driveways and garages are crossovers and SUVs. If the Stelvio can tap into this growing thirst for crossovers, it could sell the 100,000 annual units the Giulia never did.
Alfa is well aware of the market demand for crossovers, of course, which is why it has two more on the way; one smaller than the Stelvio and one larger. They may not be the pedigreed performance cars Alfa enthusiasts love, but they will be the kind of products that afford Alfa the ability to do fun things like make lightweight mid-engine sportscars like the 4C and maybe even one day go racing in Formula 1.