Dear Fiat: Sell the Q2 and Q4 Names to Audi Already!

About a week ago, British media was hot on the trail of a duel between Fiat and Audi. The Italians own the exclusive rights to use the names "Q2" and "Q4" on automobiles and Audi… kind of needs them.
They have a major investment plan worth tens of billions of euros which will result in a major lineup increase to exactly 60 models. But without the Q2 and Q4 premium SUVs, it would be very weird for them.

The names belong to Alfa Romeo, who uses them to denote whether a model has either two or four-wheel drive. It's not steeped into tradition, since cars like the GT Q2 and 159 Q4 are hardly the stuff of legend, but the Italians are not budging an inch. Maserati also uses the Q4 name for several powertrains on the Ghibli and Quattroporte sedan.

To be honest, we've known about this problem for over a year. Audi has talked about being forced to name its Q2 model "A2 Q" in order to bypass Fiat's trademark. But doing so would mean they are battling BMW and Mercedes with one hand tied behind their back.

Fiat and especially Alfa Romeo need money more than they need a couple of badges, but old man Sergio Marchionne is angry with his Volkswagen rival, chairman Ferdinand Piech. This is his way of paying the Germans back for all their shenanigans, but I thing this stubborn attitude is exactly what's wrong with the European companies he directs right now.

With Marchionne at the helm, Alfa Romeo will either remain a niche player or will go the way of the dodo bird and… Lancia.

Back in 2013, Audi was strong-arming Fiat bosses in order to buy Alfa Romeo from them. The money CEO Rupert Stadler was willing to give them would have been used to kickstart the core Fiat brand and in return, Audi would take the Pomigliano assembly plant and the Magneti Marelli auto parts division off their hands.

Audi has a small part of the blame for not thing ahead. Back in 2004, Audi probably though they would only sell a couple of SUVs in America, but the market boomed beyond their wildest expectations and a decade later, they want not one but seven models. Audi's marketing teams were probably following BMW's lead in only using even numbers, but begun focusing on even numbers ever since the X6.

Sure, Fiat has a right to be angry with the overpowered. But just think what Fiat, a struggling automaker, could do with German millions! The Linea, Bravo and Punto projects all seem to be stuck at the moment. Just take the money and give us good cars, not stupid badges.
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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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