In an amazingly frank interview with Speedweek.com, KTM Stefan Pierer (above) has outlined how he sees the Austrian brand taking Ducati into the company, possibly.
The comments are sure to make some waves for the Italian brand, especially as they come in the wake of recent thoughts from Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess. The VW company owns Ducati and speculation about the company’s future has been rife for the past two years. Diess spoke about a merger with another brand as a real option for Ducati, saying: “I can imagine a merger or a collaboration with other brands, Ducati simply as a motorcycle icon within the VW company is not enough.”
So these latest comments from Pierer will only add fuel to ‘what’s happening to Ducati?’ fire. Pierer said: “I have an emotional relationship with Ducati… The only brand that suits us is Ducati, everything else you can forget.
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“MV Agusta is too small. New homologation challenges are waiting for us… and there is demographic development in Europe as well – today you have to go to Asia with a motorcycle company, to India.”
There’s a precedent for Pierer dealing with larger companies too, previous dealings between BMW and the KTM boss landed another marque that’s an improving part of the KTM group – Husqvarna – Pierer added: “When the Volkswagen Group with all its brands developed the platform strategy, I saw this as a role model.
“We bought Husqvarna in 2012 when our friends from BMW asked us for help. There were many critical voices back then. We have been told that we would only trouble ourselves with it. But we knew thanks to VW, how it’s done.
“Audi (part of the VW group) may soon have other priorities than a motorcycle plant due to the diesel affair and e-mobility. Ducati is the Ferrari of the motorcycle industry. Of course, having such a brand in our group would be interesting.
“Ducati is not concerned with the purchase price, but with the question: ‘How can we become stronger together?’ Time will tell…”