Say good bye to Maserati’s research lab in Modena

Modena’s Troubles Continue

There’s no peace for Modena. Maserati has been implementing various cost-saving measures, and the future looks uncertain. The downsizing began back in December 2023 with layoffs affecting the workforce at the plant. Just a month ago, management announced 173 redundancies, mostly targeting engineers and designers, through voluntary departures.

Another Blow: Innovation Lab Dismantling

Now, yet another setback: the historic Innovation Lab, Maserati’s research and development center, is set for a gradual dismantling by the end of the year. The 400 employees will be transferred to the Tower offices in Modena. This development casts a shadow, especially when recalling the commitment of the late Sergio Marchionne in establishing this center of excellence. Marchionne believed in Made in Italy, intending for the structure to unite some of the brightest minds in the motoring sector. Doubts arise about Stellantis’ true commitment to the region.

A Grim Outlook for Stellantis

The situation in Modena is not unique. Elsewhere, the scenario appears just as bleak. The Grugliasco plant, closed in 2023, is now searching for a buyer. Recently, its insignia was removed. According to a joint statement from Fim Cisl, Uilm Uil, Aqcf-R, and Fiom Cgil Modena, Stellantis is pursuing cost reduction in Modena by vacating a recently renovated space, the former Officina Orlandi, and returning it to the city. This space was expanded under Marchionne’s vision to bolster design and research in Italy, particularly in the motor valley.

Shifting Operations and Reducing Costs

Stellantis’ strategy involves significantly reducing space and personnel costs. Most activities will move to the historic factory in via Ciro Menotti. The fate of the factory in via Emilia Ovest is sealed, with its offices being repurposed due to a shift to 50% smart working. The Maserati Tower, built in the late ’90s by Ferrari’s then-president Luca Cordero di Montezemolo, will house the remaining operations.

The Struggles of the MC20

Alarming declines in Maserati’s performance further complicate the picture. Registrations fell by a fifth in 2023 compared to 2017, and the first quarter of 2024 saw another drop of over 20% compared to the previous year. The MC20 super sports car is particularly concerning, with demand plummeting by 75%. Given that the MC20 is a major production in Modena, tensions are high. Workers’ representatives blame the group’s lack of regional focus and are calling for Government intervention in light of these developments.

Call for Government Intervention

The ongoing challenges faced by Maserati and Stellantis in Modena highlight a critical need for support. Workers and their representatives are urging the Government to step in and address the situation, hoping for measures that can stabilize the industry and protect jobs in this iconic automotive hub.

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