Enzo Ferrari came up with the Dino sub-brand in 1968 so he could better compete with higher volume companies like Porsche while not devaluing the coveted Ferrari name. The Dino marque, named after Enzo’s late son Alfredo ‘Dino’ Ferrari, was discontinued in 1976, but it’s now poised to make a return according to current Fiat Chrysler boss Sergio Marchionne.
When speaking on the return of the Dino name, Marchionne told Autoblog “it’s a when not an if,” type of scenario. He added in that the Dino name is “an underused resource” at Ferrari and if they are going to follow through with producing such a model, they “need to get it right.”
The Dino name was originally used to designate Ferrari cars with less than 12 cylinders. Similarly, the Dino nameplate may now be used to mark Ferraris which have less than eight cylinders, with a forced induction V6 engine likely being earmarked for the impending Dino successor. Marchionne alluded to this fact, saying the response to the twin-turbocharged V6 in the Maserati Ghibli “has been positive.”
Talk of a cheaper V6-powered Ferrari may have purists crying foul, but they need not worry, as Marchionne understands Ferrari is all about passion and exclusivity. He says the Dino would not simply be a budget Ferrari and that he “would never try to sell another 500 cars at the expense of the Ferrari name.” Instead, the Dino, whether it returns as a sub-brand or a single model, will likely offer a different type of car and driving experience to Ferrari buyers, not just a more affordable one.
“You don’t screw around with the interests of your customers,” Marchionne added.