BMW Officially Partners with Fiat, Alfa Romeo

If the next-generation Alfa Romeo Mi.To happens to feel a bit teutonic, we'll blame BMW. The German automaker today signed an agreement with Fiat Group to partner with future vehicle development.

The memorandum of understanding opens the door to using common archetictures and components. As previously reported, BMW's looking to share most of the architecture for the third-generation Mini with Fiat. The same platform may also support a future variant of the Grande Punto hatchback, in addition to future iterations of the Mi.To.

Although component sharing is key to lowering costs, perhaps the biggest boon for Fiat is BMW's marketing network. While BMW's release refrains from such details, Fiat's release notes that BMW may support Alfa Romeo's North American launch.

That's a huge help for Alfa. Although the low-volume 8C Competizione sports car is headed our way next year via Maserati dealers, few concrete plans exist for marketing the rest of Alfa's lineup in the States. Maserati dealers wouldn't likely enjoy the notion of handling high-volume models, and the cost of building up a sales and service infrastructure from scratch could severely tax Fiat's finances.

While Alfa Romeos won't make their way stateside until 2010, expect BMW and Fiat to set the exact details of their partnership by the end of 2008.

John Shea
Fascinating article, Mr. McCausland, about a fascinating time. I wonder how many people now remember it was the Democrats, in the form of JFK and LBJ, who implemented the first of the three great tax cuts that have occurred in the USA at twenty year intervals since 1960.
Christopher Taylor
Don't forget the Studebaker Avanti! A 2+2 long nose short deck car as the same type as the Mustang but before it!
Benedetto Salerni
Mustang
Tim Nofullname
Imagine just how big American Motors could have been if the Tarpon had been built.
Glenn Brown
Concept cars don't count.
eric in oregon
"The photos you see here are of a 1965 American Motors Rambler Tarpon, a bulky fastback coupe considered too large and too heavy to truly be a Mustang competitor" I've looked and looked, no Tarpon pictures. What's up with that?
Gregory Easton
Wasn't the 'Cuda rushed into production just to beat Ford & their Mustang? The Plymouth suffered for it both in quality & style.
Jeffery Pelton
Good thing the Barracuda wasn't deemed 1st or we'd be calling them fish cars.
John Shea
@eric in oregon Click 'See all photos' and scroll right.
CALI-LIFER
@Jeffery Pelton lol

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