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Slow sales = idle Maserati workers

by Bill Cawthon on

Reuters reported that workers at Fiat Chrysler’s Grugliasco plant are being given a mandatory, nearly-three-week break due to lower than expected demand.

All 1,900 employees will be idled from Thursday, March 17, until Monday, April 4, according to FIOM, one of the unions, which also noted temporary layoffs in January and earlier this month.

Maserati sales have fallen in the U.S. and China, its largest markets. U.S. sales came to 1,073 last year, down about 10% from an all-time record year in 2014.

Slumping demand for the Quattroporte, Ghibli and the eight-year-old GranTurismo (shown in photo) are the key to the problem but the lack of the Levante SUV, due last year, has also been a contributor to Maserati’s missing its 2015 sales goal.

Bill Cawthon grew up in the auto industry in the 1950s. His Dad worked for Chrysler and Bill spent a number of Saturdays down on the plant floor at Dodge Main in Hamtramck. Bill is also the U.S. market correspondent for, a British auto industry publication, and a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association, which has named the Jeep Grand Cherokee the “SUV of Texas” several times and named the Ram 1500 as the “Truck of Texas” two years running.

Bill has owned five Plymouths (including the only 1962 “Texan”), one Dodge and one Chrysler and is still trying to figure out how to justify a Wrangler. He also has owned at least one of every 1:87 scale model of a Chrysler product. You can reach him directly at (206) 888-7324 or by using the form.

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