Alfa Romeo plans American development, pricing of the manual Toyota GR Supra seems reasonable, Porsche might be teaming up with Red Bull. All this and more in today’s issue of The Morning Dump.
Welcome to The Morning Dump, bite-sized stories corralled into a single article for your morning perusal. If your morning coffee’s working a little too well, pull up a throne and have a gander at the best of the rest of yesterday.
Alfa Romeo To Develop New Model In America
Italian automakers haven’t been having a brilliant time in America as of late. Sure, Ferrari and Lamborghini will always have customers, but Maserati isn’t on most luxury consumers’ radar, Alfa Romeo is seeing fairly low sales, and when was the last time you saw a new Fiat? In an attempt to change this, Reuters reports that Alfa Romeo boss Jean-Philippe Imperato claims the brand will develop a new large model in America.
“Our offer for a large size vehicle must fit international markets, American, Chinese, European,” he said during a media call, a day after parent Stellantis released first half results.
Alfa Romeo is still assessing whether the new model will be an SUV, a crossover or a sedan but it will not probably be a classic large SUV, such as BMW’s X5 or X6, Imparato said.
“We want to find the right mix,” he said. “It’s a decision we will take by the end of this year”.
While it makes sense to develop a new vehicle in one of its most important markets, this decision begs a question: what on earth would an Alfa Romeo raised on Natty Light, KFC Double Downs, and Maury reruns be like? While I have some minor reservations about whether or not this new vehicle will preserve Alfa’s Italian essence, I’ll wait to see and drive the final product before passing judgment. It looks like I’ll be waiting a long time though, as the finished model isn’t expected until 2027.
Pricing For The Manual GR Supra Actually Seems Entirely Reasonable
Three-pedal fans rejoice! Despite the development costs of a new variant of ZF’s S6-53BZ six-speed manual gearbox and the tooling costs of some new interior bits, the manual Toyota GR Supra costs no more than the automatic variant. Toyota’s released full pricing for the 2023 GR Supra, so let’s break things down.
First off, all GR Supra are subject to a $1,095 freight charge. That’s fairly reasonable in the grand scheme of things, although still worth pointing out because freight charges aren’t optional. Here at The Autopian, we like to include freight charges in new car pricing because there’s nothing worse than being told a basic MSRP then getting slapped with an egregious freight charge when you hit the showroom. The B48 four-cylinder-powered GR Supra 2.0 now starts at $44,635, or $6,390 more than a rear-wheel-drive BMW 230i. Sure, the GR Supra 2.0 is lighter, but some extra pounds might be worth it for some extra rear seats. Also, $6,390 is a lot of money. Moving up to the models everyone cares about, the GR Supra 3.0 Base now costs $53,595 in automatic or manual form. For context, the new Nissan Z in Performance trim with the big brakes and limited-slip differential stickers for $51,015, so the jump up to a manual GR Supra 3.0 Base really isn’t that crazy.
If you want more features, the GR Supra 3.0 Premium stickers for $56,745, while the limited-edition manual-only A91 model clocks in at $59,440. Is a cognac leather interior, some special trim, and either gray or matte white paint worth an extra $2,695 over the 3.0 Premium trim? Maybe not for me, but it might be for you. In any case, the 2023 Toyota GR Supra will arrive in dealerships later this year, so get ready for a new three-pedal sports car to hit the streets.
Stellantis Offering Early Retirement Packages To Canadian Workers
It’s no secret that the electric future will bring about massive changes on the production side of the automotive industry, and Stellantis appears to be restructuring some of its workforce in order to prepare. According to Automotive News Canada, Stellantis is offering early retirement packages to workers at its Windsor, Ontario and Brampton, Ontario assembly plants.
The move comes just months after the automaker committed billions to the factories, a new electric-vehicle battery plant and EV r&d centre in Windsor.
The automaker didn’t say how many people it hopes will accept the offer. Nor did the company provide financial details about the packages being offered.
Stellantis said employees will learn the details on Aug. 1 and have two weeks to decide on whether to accept the offer.
Early retirement packages definitely sound like they have the potential to be kinder than layoffs, particularly given how hard the Canadian Auto Workers union fights for its members. It’ll be interesting to potentially see what the early retirement package consists of and how many employees take it.
Porsche’s Reportedly Planning To Take A Huge Stake In Red Bull’s F1 Assets
Well, well, well. It looks like the rumors of Porsche entering Formula 1 might have some substance to them after all. Bloomberg reported on some leaked documents that suggest Porsche might take as much as a 50 percent stake in some Red Bull Formula 1 assets, a massive move considering Red Bull is highly competitive this season.
The filing shows that Porsche petitioned Moroccan race authorities on July 8 regarding an impending 10-year deal with the F1 team.
The notification outlined a 50 percent purchase of Red Bull Technology, which builds chassis for the Formula 1 team Oracle Red Bull Racing; it indicated that the partnership would also extend to the separate F1 team business.
The leaked documents are reliable, a Red Bull Racing spokesperson confirmed.
Details regarding how the deal is to be be structured are not finalized, say sources close to the matter.
While the details of this potential arrangement are still very much up in the air, teaming up with Red Bull would be a spectacular move for Porsche. Not only is Red Bull a successful, high-profile team, the driver fanbase is immense. Best of luck for Porsche and Red Bull moving forward, hopefully some sort of arrangement can be worked out.
Whelp, time to drop the lid on today’s edition of The Morning Dump. Happy Friday, everyone! We made it to the end of the week and indeed the end of the month. That’s right, the next Morning Dump you’ll see from me will happen in August. Where does the year go, am I right? In anticipation of a new month, I’d love to know what car stuff you want to do in August. Maybe you want to attend a show, finish an engine swap, or simply weave through some cones at an autocross event. Whatever the case, I’d love to hear your automotive hopes and dreams for the coming month.
Lead photo credit: Alfa Romeo