Ferrari has denied falling victim to the global economic crisis, even though it plans to shed up to 10 per cent of its workforce this week.
Global sales at the Italian supercar maker have dived from almost 600 a month to just 92 cars in November and Ferrari is now negotiating with Italy’s trade unions to trim unwanted road-car production staff.
The company has admitted it could shed up to 300 employees as early as this Friday.
Ferrari will also shut its Maranello production plant for an unprecedented 20 days over Christmas, which sources insist will be to prevent vehicle stockpiles reaching unmanageable levels.
The company won its 16th F1 World Constructor’s Championship last month and still boasts of a two-year waiting list on its high-priced, exclusive road cars, but sources said that troubling stocks have built up at some of its distributors around the world, particularly in the UK.
As recently as the Paris motor show last October, Ferrari chairman Luca di Montezemolo had been speaking of a sales target of 10,000 cars for 2010 which, even with the new Ferrari California on stream early next year, now seems wildly optimistic.
Back then di Montezemolo insisted the financial crisis held no concerns for Ferrari because a reduction in sales would allow it to respond quickly to markets that might have otherwise waited years for cars.
“Of course the economic problems are being considered,” he said. “It depends how long this crisis goes on, if this is close to the end or not. Because we will see a different world out the other side."
The Ferrari chairman went on castigate the financiers whom he regards as responsible for the economic meltdown.