5:07 am - Wednesday January 16, 2019

Ferrari chairman Luca Di Montezemolo to step down in favour of Fiat chief executive Sergio Marchionne

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Fiat chief executive Sergio Marchionne says he, not Luca di Montezemolo, will decide the Ferrari chairman’s future at the Scuderia, while panning the Scuderia’s current performance. Di Montezemolo, Ferrari chairman sone 1991, was the subject of rumours ahead of the Italian Grand Prix, with reports that the he was to step down at the end of the year in favour of Fiat boss Marchionne. However, during an appearance at Monza on Saturday di Montezemolo dismissed these rumours, insisting that he has no intention of leaving Ferrari, who he originally joined in 1974. While di Montezemolo said he will continue as head of Ferrari for three years at the very least, Marchionne.

Luca di Montezemolo, the Ferrari president who transformed the famous Italian brand into the premier luxury car maker in the world, returning the Formula One team to the top in the process, has stood down after 23 years at the helm.

In news widely expected after a very public rebuke from the boss of the parent company, Fiat, after a dismal performance from the Scuderia in Sunday’s Italian Grand Prix, di Montezemolo confirmed he would leave in October.

The 67-year-old had claimed just last week in Monza he intended to serve another three years and would decide on the date his departure, but sources close to the situation said then that “the story was over”. Di Montezemolo made the announcment just a day before Ferrari were preparing to announce record profits, but the F1 team has fallen on hard times.

It is thought he will move on to take over as boss of the Alitalia airline. He said the decision was triggered by flotation plans for the new Fiat Chrysler Automobiles company, planned for the New York Stock Exchange next month.

Di Montezemolo, the son of an aristocratic family from the Piedmont region of Italy, said: “This is the end of an era and so I have decided to leave my position as Chairman after almost 23 marvellous and unforgettable years in addition to those spent at Enzo Ferrari’s side in the 1970s.

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