Does this mean Lancia could be saved?
If so, this could be the best news of 2021 so far
We all know the agony. Once the essence of petrol madness, the quirkiest, the craziest, the most innovative, the most alternative brand of them all - almost drowned by FIAT's management (or lack of it) - it all came down to one fashion statement, the Ypsilon, that just refuses to die.
After PSA and FCA merging, anyone with a piece of common sense could predict that first one to go is Lancia. Just pull the plugs and finish the agony.
BUT...(and one major BUT it is)
...according to some unofficial sources, published by 'motor1.it', some of the documents in Stellantis management board naming, published recently, show a structure of brands under Stellantis - that show a bright future for the loved Lancia.
According to that, the brand hierarchy under Stellantis certainly counts on Lancia as a premium brand, alongside Alfa Romeo and DS Automobiles, but under the prestige Maserati brand. The structure looks like this:
1. Global SUV brand - JEEP
2. USA only brands - Chrysler, Dodge and RAM
3. 'Core' brands - Citroen, FIAT and Abarth
4. Mainstream 'upper level' brands - Opel, Vauxhall and Peugeot
5. Premium brands - Alfa Romeo, Lancia and DS
6. Luxury prestige brand - Maserati
What does this mean, if so?
Well, I see a hint (and really a long shot) that maybe, just maybe, Alfa, Lancia and DS wouldn't be all SUV based, because the JEEP should cover all the SUV offerings - maybe a model or two, but hoping that SUV bug will catch premium brands just slightly. I am probably wrong on this, but, hey, we can hope, can't we?
Mainstream Opels and Peugeots won't directly share the same stuff with the Alfas and Lancias, so we can expect an upper level of engines and performance, exclusively for them.
But, the question from the heading - this means there are definite plans to save Lancia, as a brand. To add to this theory, as the executive manager for Lancia, Stellantis named Luca Napolitano, apparently very experienced manager, so it means that Stellantis has plans for Lancia, other than bury it for good.
Napolitano has 21 years of experience in FCA, being a head of brands of FCA for Africa, Europe and Middle East.
He won't have an easy job, for sure, as Lancias sales and service network outside Italy in non-existent, but the platforms, engines, other brands sales channels are there - let's just hope he can get things done properly.