There is a rumor flying around that legendary Italian motorcycle manufacture Ducati is to be sold to German automaker Audi.
If this rumor, which came via a scoop in British auto magazine Car, turns out to be true, Italy will lose yet another of its classic marques to the Volkwagen group, of which Audi is part.
Audi already owns Italian classic brands Bugatti and Lamborghini, so Ducati would be the icing on the cake, even if taking over the Italian motorcycle maker would indicate a new direction for auto manufacturer, Audi.
In taking Ducati under its wing, Audi would be able to challenge rival BMW which has been making luxury motorbikes for years. It is only comparatively recently that Audi rival BMW has started to move into sports bike territory.
Ducati has also been diversifying, adding a supermotard bike, the Multi-Strada sports tourer and Diavel muscle sports custom models to its offering.
With Ducati’s current line up, Audi really would be well placed to go head to head with BMW. Audi may even start offering Lamborghini/Ducati packages. Who knows?
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If Ducati does fall into German hands, it will be a sad day for Italy. Ducati epitomizes Italian “made in Italy” excellence.
Why Ducati could not have found a buyer within the peninsula is hard to fathom. According to Car, not one of debt-laden Ducati’s potential purchasers are Italian.
The lack of Italian suitors is probably yet another example of Italians not appreciating Italy’s home-grown assets – other examples being Lamborghini, Bugatti, Bulgari and Gucci – each of which have fallen into non-Italian hands.
Can you imagine what would happen if Germany’s Audi made a bid for all-American Harley Davidson? There would be war!
Come on Mr “Nutella” Ferrero – Italy’s richest man! Buy Ducati and keep it Italian!
Or Italy will cease to be the “motorcycle” boot, alas.