Alfa Romeo and Maserati: the paradox of PHEV technology

In the dynamic world of automobiles, promises of technological innovation are often greeted with enthusiasm. In 2018, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) had raised expectations by announcing that future models ofAlfa Romeo and Maserati will be launched with plug-in hybrid (PHEV) technology. This announcement included the long-awaited Alfieri model, scheduled for 2020. At the time, the project seemed perfectly in tune with ecological trends and growing environmental demands.


In 2023, however, the landscape is very different. Apart from the Alfa Romeo Tonale, no other Alfa Romeo or Maserati has adopted PHEV technology.. This absence is all the more surprising given that we have it on good authority that development of the Stelvio in a PHEV version was underway in 2018 and 2019. This technological gap is not without consequences: the current models of these brands bear the full brunt of the impact of the ecological malus.a handicap that PHEV technology could have alleviated.


The question is: Why has this technology, which seems so obvious in today's world, never been fully integrated into Alfa Romeo and Maserati? Several hypotheses can be envisaged. Firstly, the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 led to a massive investment freeze in many sectors, including the automotive industry. This global health crisis may have played a role in slowing or halting PHEV developments.

Another possibility is that the merger announced at the end of 2019 between FCA and the PSA Group may also have influenced this strategic decision. In the twists and turns of corporate mergers, many projects can be reconsidered, delayed or cancelled. It is possible that a decision was taken at this level to put the brakes on PHEV developments at Alfa Romeo and Maserati.


Meanwhile, other sports car manufacturers, such as Ferrari with its SF90 and 296, and more recently Lamborghini with its Revuelto V12 PHEV and future Huracan V8 PHEV, have proved that PHEV technology is not only compatible but also advantageous for sports cars. These models are likely to raise questions within Alfa Romeo and Maserati.

Although the exact reasons for the absence of PHEV technology at Alfa Romeo and Maserati remain unclear, it is clear that this decision has significant repercussions on their market positioning.


But that's all in the past. Today, only the Tonale is available as a PHEV, and both brands are taking the risky gamble of straddling two technologies: internal combustion engines, which will be taxed more and more each year in every country, and 100 % electric engines, which still have everything to prove...


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  1. More taxes in all countries for thermal?
    There's a concrete link to such a statement because I've never seen anything like it! There's the PHEV, which was the case at Maserati, but not for the right engine. The Alfieri is a real waste, because to make such an accomplished car and then not release it is incomprehensible.
    Whatever Maserati and Alfa don't release in PHEV form, it's Lexus that profits in terms of sales, and you only have to look at Switzerland, which is increasingly full of them. Aston Martin is also completely out of the picture, as is Jaguar.

  2. There's every reason to believe that the masterminds in Italy have been infected with covid in its most severe form....
    I've been wondering for 2/3 years what the B.E. are doing in Milan,Turin.... They must have been struck by lethargy, it's not possible. There's nothing more band...t on offer! Except for the 33 Stradale, which the vast majority won't even be able to see one day.

    @Ced mentions Lexus and its technology, as well as its standing, and I can confirm this because I've been there recently. Why don't the Italian brands follow suit, citing only premium, that juicy slogan (for the wallets of Italian executives only) because the level is far from being reached, despite real progress. If the vehicles have improved (Giulia, Stelvio), the quality can also be seen in the dealerships....
    In short, innovative models, a perfect and serene welcome, an after-sales service that suffers no criticism whatsoever, Alfa has an enormous amount of work to do, almost impossible in such a short space of time... That's why I left, with a heavy heart...

  3. The reasons for abandoning the PHEV inevitably have to do with the FCA-PSA merger.
    Alfa Romeo and Maserati are going to the wall with all-electricity, and what's more, with PureTech engines in Alfa Romeos.
    It's as if Stellantis had decided to sacrifice these brands, and concentrate everything on Peugeot-derived cars. But no Alfa Romeo customer will ever want to buy a rebadged Peugeot, as we'll see with the Alfa Romeo Junior.
    Imparato is either the wrong man for Alfa Romeo, or he's not calling the shots and is just Tavares' executor. He makes Marchionne miss him.

  4. The massive CO2 taxes that are rising sharply year on year are special to France, aren't they?
    In what other country does this exist?

    • Each EU country has its own calculations for taxing polluting vehicles, but it was the EU that proposed that each country should make reforms to tax vehicles (this dates back to 2005). This evolves at the pace of each country's reforms, and there are many documents on the Internet on this subject.
      Countries like Finland, the Low Countries, Ireland and Slovenia tax even more. Conversely, each country has its own rules on incentives for buying an electric car. and it's evolving every year with the 2035 target.

      • Thanks, I'll look into it. On the document dating from 2020 the malus for CO2 was still acceptable. But it's gone up a lot since then.
        If you compare France with Belgium or Italy, France taxes much more. There's an acceptable level of malus, but when the malus equals the price of the car, it's no longer acceptable.

        • Yes, I haven't found a recap for 2022, but all this to say that even if each country makes its own mayonnaise, all will tend, unless there is a drastic political change, towards more and more taxes.

          • I did a lot of research on taxes in Portugal, Spain, Italy, Greece and Eastern European countries that are part of the Euro... we're far from having crazy taxes.

        • Stanislas:
          Yes, in France this triples the price of vehicles, which is why many brands are starting to desert them altogether.
          One ex:
          A GR86 costs €46,000 all taxes included, but with the made-in-France malus, you're looking at over €106,000, and the same goes for mustangs and other popular coupes.

          • From 2024 onwards, a large proportion of cars with a little power will no longer be sold on the French market.
            The GR86 may be withdrawn from sale on the French market. The GR Yaris will have as much tax as the price of the car, which will put it at over €70,000. The Stelvio 2.0 280 hp goes from €72,950 to €132,950 with taxes. No longer available in France.

          • That's why we're seeing more and more cars with foreign plates, and France 🇫🇷 can't do anything about it, because these are European agreements. So much the worse for France, and so much the better for the others.

    • In Belgium, too, taxes are becoming unbearable. Thanks to the environmentalists and those who vote for them. Meanwhile, the Chinese are building coal-fired power plants that pollute like millions of cars, and we say nothing.

      • Actually, without wishing to offend you, this has nothing to do with the ecologists but rather with the ultra-globalist assholes who make all the words about cars because they have found a financial windfall to draw from the cash cows... all of us.
        Taxes are not used for ecology but diverted to fatten the multinationals and multi-billionaires and shareholders so that they can gorge themselves even more and that ecology they do not care because it does not bother them to take private jets ✈️ or helicopter 🚁 for their personal pleasure and to run their factories 🏭 full pots in overproduction even if it means all pollute at all costs as long as it brings in max and governments are in cahoots with the crime of insider trading. personal pleasure and keep their factories running 🏭 full of overproduction, even if it means polluting everything as long as it brings in the big bucks, and governments are in cahoots with insider trading because they work in the public sector and create laws to line their own pockets in the private sector! A fine bunch of scum, including Tavares and Elkhan, like all the others in this circle of scum (like all of Europe, apart from a few states).

    • In France we don't talk about taxes on everything, and in a while the subsidies will dry up: all in reverse. Personally, I drive an impeccable Stelvio diesel.

          • Well, you're the only one, because many dealerships and after-sales services are notorious disasters and can't maintain Giulias, Stelvios and 4Cs, and it's no better with 124 Fiat and Abarths, whose customers prefer to go to Mazda's after-sales service to have them serviced.

          • There are good garages and bad garages. I don't doubt that some are bad, but I'm talking about my experience in 2 garages I've been to many times, and whose workshops are excellent. When I bought my 147 GTA in the south of France, the day after I bought it, the left electric window broke. They went out of their way to find the motor for me, and in less than 48 hours they had it and repaired it on the spot.
            As for the garage I frequent in the Paris region, it has always been good.
            But those are just two examples. I also go to another garage for 147 repairs, but it's not an Alfa dealer, just an authorized agent who does other makes.

  5. Good comments
    ... I think Alfa is dead, due to the stupidity of its managers after Marchionne and the diktats of the ecologists. I owned 13 Alfas, including 2 Giulias, a fabulous car. The death of these cars will change NOTHING about climate concerns, but our technocrats will say they did something....

  6. Plug-in hybrids are a scandal. We all know that more than 80% of users NEVER recharge them. It's bad enough having to fill up with stinking diesel, without having to worry about filling up with electricity. Double the hassle. Bravo to Alfa Romeo for not going along with this charade, which is only designed to trick the taxman!

  7. That says it all. Marchionne had the idea of putting Alfa back on track and in its rightful place, but the following years would massacre everything.

    • True. But it was FCA, not Stellantis, who offers you rebadged Peugeots.
      Marchionne was great, he brought out the Giulia and Stelvio, but the Alfa range was too small with the non-replacement of the Giulietta.

      • He should have brought out a station wagon that would have rocketed sales in Europe because it was so popular, and a 4-seater GTV like the M4. His mistake was not believing in Lancia and taking Maserati away from Ferrari.

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