Audi have bought Ducati for an estimated £708 million. After months of speculation and negotiating the deal has finally been completed. The deal also involves Audi taking responsibility for Ducati’s liabilities which are worth £150 million.
Catching up with BMW
Some put Audi’s decision down to them wanting to close the gap with German counterparts, BMW. BMW are currently the world’s leading luxury car manufacturer with Audi lagging behind in second place, ahead of Mercedes-Benz. BMW have a sport bike division too which is performing quite at present. Expect Audi to pull out all the stops to knock BMW off their pedestal.
A second chance
Audi almost completed the deal for the Italian brand back in 1984. Ferdinand Piech, the Volkswagen Group Chairman has spoken of his regret at not purchasing the company back then when it was put up for sale. Eventually the company was bought by the founders of Cagiva, the Castiglioni brothers.
The impact Audi may have
Audi will bring a lot of much needed expertise and power to the Ducati brand. Currently there are 40,000 being produced every year. This is a significantly small amount within the motorcycle industry. Clever marketing and strategy will ensure that Audi does not lose money from investment and covers some ground on BMW, who are one of their main rivals. The Volkswagen Group have a history of revitalising automotive brands. In the past they have taken on the likes of Lamborghini and Bentley, managing to completely turn their fortunes around.
Will Ducati’s become more economical?
Audi are likely to provide expert technology ideas on ways to make their bikes fuel efficient and economical whilst offering a tremendous performance at the same time. Audi’s natural quality and success is bound to rub off over many aspects of the Ducati Company. As the deal is at it’s earliest stages it is unknown as exactly what areas of the company Audi will improve or change yet.
Ducati values, principles and philosophy will remain
One aspect that can be guaranteed is that the values and philosophy of Ducati is certain to be kept. The Volkswagen Group have a habit of ensuring that company values are kept no matter what business they take over. They always show a great respect for the respective company involved.
Will Ducati’s fortunes change? Will this help Audi knock off BMW from the top spot?