77 months ago

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Audi plans to sell Ducati dropped, for now

Panigale V4

Panigale V4

The Italian motorcycle brands all too often seem to be ‘on the chopping block’ with their current owners. The largest of them all, Ducati, certainly haven’t been exempt from this in recent years. Acquired by VW’s Audi division back in April 2012 (for approx. $1.2 billion), many couldn’t see how Ducati fit in with the German automaker’s portfolio, other than adding a premium motorcycle division to extend their rivalry with BMW.

Recovering from losses on the heals of billions of euros in fines over CO2 emissions, Audi, which owns Ducati and Italian supercar maker Lamborghini, last month reported higher operating profit and revenue for the first nine months which was helped by growing auto demand in the higher-margin western European and U.S. markets.

It turns out that there was some internal debate as to whether the Italian motorcycle maker was to be a part of the longer term plans for Audi. Coupled with rumours the powerful labour union voted "No" on the sale, Audi CEO Rupert Stadler recently stated that they have abandoned plans to sell the Ducati brand.

I can assure you that Ducati belongs to the Audi family,” said Stadler. “Ducati is the perfect implementation of our premium philosophy in the world of motorbikes.

Investors and potential Ducati buyers, however, expect that VW could change its mind again and eventually opt to sell the asset which they say has least strategic importance to VW.

There’s no doubt that the auto industry is evolving, forced to shift their focus to zero-emissions and autonomous technologies and the VW group are structuring for this evolution. Time will tell how Ducati fits in with the future of VW / Audi. Source: Reuters

Ducati's 1299 Superleggera is the most powerful twin-cylinder production bike ever produced

Ducati's 1299 Superleggera is the most powerful twin-cylinder production bike ever produced

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