Volkswagen To Dump Ducati?
Automotive giant Volkswagen is apparently considering diverging itself from Ducati Motor Holdings in an effort to raise capital following the massive fines the company has incurred as a result of the Dieselgate saga, where Volkswagen and Audi cars were found to be cheating on emissions testing.
Volkswagen has reportedly already put aside a staggering $16.2 billion euros to repair more than 11 million cars worldwide, according the Bloomberg, and is now considering a strategic move that would see the dumping of Ducati as well as the MAN Diesel & Turbo trucking business and propulsion specialist, MAN Renk.
Now under the guidance of Chief Executive Officer Matthias Mueller, Volkswagen purchased Ducati in 2012 under then long-time CEO and later chairman of the company – and nephew of Dr. Ferdinand Porsch – Ferdinand Piech, for $870 million and could now be worth as much as $1.5 billion in today’s market. And considering the two-wheeled brand is not part of the Volkswagen Group’s core business of selling cars with profit levels comparatively low to the four-wheel sector, selling Ducati now could give the firm some much needed capital.
Ducati has seen enormous investment in R&D and from the Volkswagen Group since that 2012 takeover, with bikes like the massively popular Scramber, Ducati Panigale 1299, Multistrada 1200 Enduro and Monster 1200 all products that owe their birth the injected funds from Germany. As a result, Ducati is in the best financial position of its life, another reason Volkswagen might sell to guarantee a large return on investment.
Under Piech’s reign, Volkswagen purchased not just Ducati but also Audi, Czech car brand Skoda and Spanish car maker Seat. Those brands appear to be safe from the Volkswagen axe, as does Italian supercar manufacturer Lamborghini, which is seen as a valuable R & D platform for future automotive technologies.