Monday, December 28, 2009

Is this the 2011 Dodge Charger?

Will the new Dodge Charger get back to it's legendary muscle car status? One name that gets muscle car enthusiasts excited is Charger. Most die hard cars buffs feel Dodge missed the mark with the Dodge Charger. It has capable performance with the 5.7 Hemi engine, but the enthusiast wish the styling would have been closer to the 1969 Charger.
Is this the 2011 Charger, if so it is Hot!

Is Chrysler going to reveal The Delta and Electric 500 cars at the Detroit Auto Show?

The Internet is a buzz with the rumors of a shared platform Chrysler/Lancia Delta to be unveiled at the Detroit International Auto show. Also the Small 500 and 500 Electric.
This would be great news for Chrysler if they can do so. With Ram winning the Motor Trend Truck of The Year, they should keep the good news coming.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Motor Trend Truck of the Year: 2010 Dodge Ram Heavy Duty

A heavy duty truck has won Motor Trend’s coveted Truck of the Year title -- an award the magazine has rarely given to a heavy duty truck that occupies a small niche of the market.

Dodge redesigned the Ram 1500 in 2009, adding a better driving experience and more amenities. For 2010, the heavy-duty Ram 2500 and 3500 models get the same treatment.

The award, however, reflects the changing way Americans view trucks. While pickups were common family vehicles before the recent recession, truck makers are increasingly focusing their efforts on industrial and commercial markets. The AP reports, “Motor Trend said it has refocused the prize this year to reward trucks with greater utility, as leisure truck buyers have largely deserted the market. The magazine said the new focus is reflected in the choice of finalists.”

The 2010 Dodge Ram Heavy Duty beat out the Ford F-150 SVT Raptor, a high-performance off-road truck built in limited quantities, as well as two vehicles aimed primarily at commercial buyers -- the Toyota Tundra 4.6-liter work truck and the Ford Transit Connect cargo van.....More

Monday, December 7, 2009

Chrysler has big plans for Ram truck brand

Chrysler Group LLC wants to make its new Ram truck brand as big, bold and profitable as the full-size pickups that are its cornerstone, and plans to do it by expanding into commercial vans and potentially big rigs.--...More

Chrysler plans for future Ram after Dakota

One future product idea that has survived the transition from bankrupt Chrysler to the new Chrysler Group LLC is a unibody pickup to replace the Dodge Dakota, which will be discontinued in 2011.---...More

Monday, November 23, 2009

Chrysler Group LLC will translate into dazzling stock market success

Fiat may get mileage from Chrysler after all

Maybe, just maybe, Fiat Group SpA's link with Chrysler Group LLC will translate into dazzling stock market success.

While some investment analysts think Chrysler is unsalvageable, and therefore of no use to Fiat, others are now taking the view that Chrysler is a turnaround story in the making, one that could lift the Italian auto makers' fortunes....More

Friday, November 20, 2009

Four Chrysler vehicles were named Top Safety Picks

Four Chrysler vehicles were named Top Safety Picks for 2010 by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety while Toyota failed to place a single car or truck on the list. Chrysler also had more domestic models on the list than either Ford or General Motors.

Chrysler got the nod for the Avenger and Sebring sedans when equipped with optional Electronic Stability Control, the Dodge Journey and the Jeep Patriot with optional thorax side air bags.....More

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Chrysler zeroes in on quality

Chrysler Group LLC's senior vice president in charge of quality told The Detroit News on Wednesday that changing the companys culture to collectively attack quality problems has been as difficult -- and essential-- as making better cars---...More

U.S. encouraged by Fiat plan for Chrysler

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. government is encouraged by the turnaround plan for Chrysler presented by Fiat SpA (FIA.MI) but will not push for a quick offering of the automaker's shares, a senior official said.

"We see management with a huge sense of urgency. We see a huge dedication and commitment, working extremely hard," Ron Bloom, who heads the Obama administration's autos task force told Reuters on Tuesday. "It's an ambitious plan."

The U.S. Treasury directed and funded a restructuring of the No. 3 U.S. automaker in bankruptcy that gave operational control of Chrysler and an initial 20-percent stake to Fiat....More

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Chrysler revamps electric program

Chrysler Group LLC is restructuring its electric program as it works to develop hybrids and electric vehicles for its own brands as well as for partner Fiat SpA---...More

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Dodge, Jeep, Chrysler get makeover

Chrysler Group LLC wants to hit the restart button on its entire lineup, refreshing, redesigning or replacing every car and truck, swapping out engines and creating vehicles people want. By 2012, Chrysler will have overhauled or replaced its entire lineup---...More

Monday, November 2, 2009

Marchionne: Man with the plan to rescue Chrysler

CEO to unveil his 5-year strategy Wednesday

From the dark rumpled sweaters he wears most days to his modest, fourth-floor command post at the Chrysler Tech Center in Auburn Hills, Sergio Marchionne has said that he is intent on debunking the "Great Man" theory of leadership.
"At Fiat, we have created a culture where everyone is expected to lead," he wrote last December in the Harvard Business Review....More

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

2010 Dodge Ram truck intro to be well financed

Scott Burgess / The Detroit News
The 2010 Dodge Ram Heavy pickup will hit dealerships in a few weeks with a new look and the same powerful engines, but with a well-financed marketing campaign in tow, Chrysler LLC executives said Tuesday.

"There is pent-up demand in all of the markets, especially the truck market," said Mark Heber, director of Dodge Ram marketing. "All we need is a little bit of an uptick in the economy and things could take off."

Heber said the automaker, which emerged from bankruptcy in July, remains committed to the truck and will have a substantial marketing budget. He declined to give figures or say how soon the campaign will begin....More

Chrysler's product plans to be shown in 'six-hour extravaganza'

WINDSOR, Ont. — Some industry analysts are calling it "a six-hour extravaganza." That's the length of time Chrysler Group LLC has allotted for the public unveiling of its long-awaited, five-year product and business plan.

Journalists and auto analysts will gather at the Technology Centre at the automaker's Auburn Hills, Mich., headquarters Nov. 4 to hear CEO Sergio Marchionne finally release details of how he intends to integrate Fiat and Chrysler in a way that ensures the No. 3 automaker's survival.

Although his revival efforts face an avalanche of skepticism, the Italian-Canadian CEO is being compared to industry icon Lee Iacocca. Following a speech recently to the Detroit Economic Club, U.S. Transportation SecretaryRay Lahood said Marchionne is "the next generation of Lee Iacocca....More

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

2010 Dodge Ram Heavy Duty and 2010 Dodge Dakota Take Top Honors

- All-new 2010 Ram 3500 named "Heavy Duty Pickup Truck of Texas," beating 3/4- and one-ton competition

- 2010 Dodge Dakota named "Mid-size Truck of Texas"
SAN ANTONIO, Oct. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- Dodge Ram Heavy Duty and Dodge Dakota took top honors at the Texas Auto Writers Association (TAWA) annual Truck Rodeo outside of San Antonio, Texas this past weekend. TAWA members named the all-new 2010 Dodge Ram 3500 "Heavy Duty Pickup Truck of Texas," giving Dodge top honors over 3/4- and one-ton competitors. The 2010 Dodge Dakota also won "Mid-size Truck of Texas."

"We're very proud of these awards; they affirm our leadership in the truck market," said Fred Diaz, President and Chief Executive Officer Dodge Ram Brand, Chrysler Group LLC. "In a head-to-head competition, our all-new 2010 Ram Heavy Duty un-seated last year's winner, right in the pickup truck capital of the U.S. Ram is not only the best heavy-duty truck we've ever built; it's the best heavy-duty truck on the market, hands down. We're also proud that the Dodge Dakota won its category, affirming Dakota's capability and versatility." ....More

Monday, October 19, 2009

GMAC: Most Chrysler dealers to qualify for new loans

Company says most of Chrysler's 2,400 retailers will get needed financing

GMAC Financial Services President Bill Muir said Sunday that the number of Chrysler dealers expected to close because they don't qualify for new loans through the lender is likely to be small.

GMAC was designated the new finance company for Chrysler Group LLC dealers after the automaker filed for bankruptcy.

The Detroit News reported Saturday that some dealers said they had been told by GMAC and Chrysler officials that hundreds of dealers were at risk of not being able to finance with GMAC.....More

GMAC: Most Chrysler dealers to qualify for new loans

GMAC Financial Services President Bill Muir said Sunday that the number of Chrysler dealers expected to close because they dont qualify for new loans through the lender is likely to be small----...More

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Chrysler News-CEO: Chrysler profitable by 2011

After a four-month deep dive into the workings of Chrysler Group LLC, Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne remains convinced the automaker can be profitable in two years.---

Friday, October 9, 2009

Dodge Ram Truck Crushes the Competition

Ram vs. Competition
.Its not bragging if it's true.

When you engineer this much capability, quality and innovation into one truck, you're gonna win a few contests. Take a look at what victories the All-New Ram has already claimed.

Ride quality

•Better off-road ride than Chevy, GMC and Nissan
•Better Smooth Road Ride than Ford, GMC, Nissan and Toyota

•Faster 0-60 mph Acceleration than Ford and Chevy
•Faster ¼ mile Acceleration than Ford and Chevy
Acceleration while towing

•Faster 0-60 mph acceleration while towing than Ford and Chevy
•Faster merging acceleration (20-65 mph) while towing than Ford and Chevy
Acceleration with payload

•Faster 0-60 mph acceleration with a 1,120 lb payload than Ford or Chevy
•Faster merging acceleration (20-65mph) with a 1,120 lb payload than Ford or Chevy
•Faster passing acceleration (40-70 mph) with a 1,120 lb payload than Ford or Chevy
Fuel economy

•Unsurpassed highway fuel Economy while towing 5,000 lbs. than Chevy or Ford

Watch The

Chrysler, Fiat Working on Electric Car

VERRONE, Italy -- Auto makers Chrysler Group LLC and Fiat SpA are working together on developing an electric car, a Chrysler board member confirmed Thursday. Alfredo Altavilla said the development process is "going very well" with Chrysler contributing its electric propulsion technology to the alliance. Mr. Altavilla made the comments at the opening of a gearbox plant in Verrone. This is the first time a Chrysler or Fiat executive has publicly confirmed Chrysler's electrification plans since Fiat Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne took control of Chrysler's assets in June after the U.S.-based company filed for bankruptcy protection.....More

Chrysler:Mexico achieves best market share in 18 months

Boosted by year-over-year sales increases of Dodge Journey, Dodge Ram, Jeep® Patriot and Chrysler Town & Country, Chrysler Mexico achieved an 11.8 percent market share in September—its best share performance in the past 18 months, beating Ford for the first time this year.

“We are thrilled by our market share achievement in September and outstanding sales growth for the past three months as this reinforces the continued confidence the Mexican consumer has in our company, our products, and our outstanding dealer body,” said Joe ChamaSrour, President—Chrysler de Mexico.

The Dodge Journey continued as the No. 1-selling crossover-utility vehicle in the market with a sales increase of 33 percent compared with September 2008, selling more than double its nearest competitor. The Dodge Ram also reported year-over-year sales increases with the Laramie Crew Cab continuing as the best-selling luxury pickup truck in the market. The Jeep Patriot had its best sales performance of the year, and the Chrysler Town & Country 25th Anniversary Edition helped boost minivan sales to levels exceeding September 2008.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Chrysler to outline 5-year business plan

Chrysler Group LLC will unveil its five-year business and product plan Nov. 4, the company said today.

The briefing by CEO Sergio Marchionne for media and analysts will be held at the Auburn Hills headquarters.

Chrysler and Fiat SpA formed a new company June 10 and Marchionne has been working with his management team on a strategy to better differentiate the brands in a business structure where each is responsible for its own profits and losses.----

Monday, October 5, 2009

Dodge Ram Brand-Company announces new brand and commercial appointments

Company announces new brand and commercial appointments

Chrysler Group LLC today announces brand and commercial organization changes.
“The brand-focused strategy has been refined further with the unbundling of the Dodge Brand which now consists of the Dodge Ram Brand and the Dodge Car Brand organizations. This reorganization will allow us to protect and develop the unique nature of the product offerings within the Dodge Brand,” Mr. Sergio Marchionne, Chief Executive Officer, Chrysler Group LLC said.

Fred Diaz Jr. is appointed President and CEO, Dodge Ram Brand with profit and loss responsibility for the Dodge Ram product portfolio. Mr. Diaz will also be the lead executive for the Sales organization in the United States. He was previously the Director of the Denver Business Center. Mr. Diaz has been with the Company since 1989 in positions of increasing responsibility. The Company will announce Mr. Diaz’s replacement with a separate announcement....More

Friday, October 2, 2009

Chrysler Vehicle Launches At Risk Because Of Daimler

The launch of key Chrysler Group LLC vehicles next year is being threatened once again by a new parts dispute between the automaker and former owner Daimler AG.

At risk are the next-generation Jeep Grand Cherokee and Dodge Durango sport utility vehicles and the Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger full-size sedans. The products are Chrysler's most important launches in 2010 and the only completely redone passenger vehicles the Auburn Hills-based automaker is introducing in two model years.

To safeguard these crucial launches, Chrysler on Thursday amended a lawsuit filed in August asking a U.S. bankruptcy court to settle any lingering and future parts disputes between the companies once and for all....More

Sergio speaks: Chrysler's future will be better

New Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne hasn’t been talking much since the company emerged from bankruptcy on June 2. While rival General Motors has come out with an aggressive advertising campaign that attempts to get skeptics to look at its new cars, Chrysler has stayed under wraps. But Marchionne did take the microphone after sales came out on Oct. 1 and showed that he has a realistic view of Chrysler’s place in the world.

Chyrsler 200c

The question is, what will built that future? The company has only the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Chrysler 300 sedan coming in the near future. Both look good but neither of them are game changers. In 18 months or so, Fiat will have some of its cars coming. We’ll see how those cars do. Americans know little about Fiat cars and too few consumers shop Chrysler and Dodge dealerships for compact cars and family sedans. To show a better tomorrow, Marchionne will have to reveal some real surprises with his November plan.....More

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Fiat Weighs Making Chryslers In Italy, Ending Magna Deal

By Gilles Castonguay
LA SPEZIA, Italy (Dow Jones)--Fiat SpA (F.MI) will let expire Magna International Inc.'s (MGA) contract to build Chrysler Group LLC vehicles in Europe and move their production to a manufacturing site in Italy that the Italian group bought at auction this summer.

"Absolutely," Fiat Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne told Dow Jones Newswires at a company event when asked if he would let expire the contract that has seen Magna build Chrysler vehicles at its Austria plant for years.

Fiat plans to invest EUR150 million during the next three years to convert the site of niche manufacturer Carrozzeria Bertone for Chrysler product assembly. The Italian group bought the defunct car plant, which has production capacity of 70,000 cars a year, at auction in August.

Magna currently builds the Chrysler 300C and the Jeep Grand Cherokee.

The move would be a continuation of Fiat's strategy to take control of Chrysler's manufacturing. Fiat has pulled Chrysler out of a number of partnerships with the likes of Japanese auto makers Nissan Motor Co. (7201.TO) and Mitsubishi Motors Corp. (7211.TO) as it sets about restructuring the third-biggest U.S. car maker, in which it owns a 20% stake.

It is unclear whether Fiat's decision was influenced by Magna's agreement earlier this month to acquire a majority stake in General Motors Co.'s European operations, which produce the Opel and Vauxhall brands. The deal has raised fears among customers of the Canadian auto-parts maker: Germany auto makers Volkswagen AG (VOW.XE) and BMW AG (BMW.XE) have expressed concern about sharing technical secrets with a supplier that now stands to become a direct competitor in making cars....More

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Chrysler to ship 400 Ohio jobs to Michigan

Workers headed to metro Detroit plants.

Chrysler Group LLC plans to offer about 400 jobs in metro Detroit to workers from its Twinsburg, Ohio, stamping plant, while the automaker prepares to freshen its slow-selling midsize sedans -- a move that could temporarily extend jobs of about 1,300 workers at the Sterling Heights assembly plant.
Twinsburg, one of eight U.S. factories not included in the government-backed sale to the new Fiat-controlled Chrysler, makes doors, roofs and hoods for the Chrysler Town & Country and Dodge Caravan minivans. It is to close by the end of this year, but most of the plant's hourly employees will be able to transfer to the metro Detroit plants, where the work is to be consolidated.---...More

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Chrysler Working out it's Long term Plan

Chrysler group mulls how to make most of Fiat's technology

The Chrysler Group LLC board met in Auburn Hills on Friday to figure out how best to use Fiat engineering and technology to make future products such as midsize sedans -- and where.

The nine-member board is to provide a report to the U.S. auto task force next week.

A person familiar with the board's agenda said it included addressing the struggling sales of Chrysler's midsize sedans -- a key segment because of its volume -- and the development of replacement vehicles that will be built from Fiat engineering and components. The midsize Chrysler Sebring and Dodge Avenger, combined, have been outsold by almost 200,000 Toyota Camrys so far this year.-- More

Friday, September 25, 2009

Chrysler refines product, business plan

Alisa Priddle / The Detroit News

The board of Chrysler Group LLC will meet in Auburn Hills today to go over details of the five-year product and business plan that will be presented to the U.S. government next week and made public in mid-November.

It is a plan that has had Chrysler employees at all levels working long days and weekends to refine since the new Chrysler Group was formed June 10 in partnership with Fiat SpA. The automaker has kept most of the strategy secret as the new management team under Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne has worked to identify areas where Chrysler and Fiat engineering and technologies can be shared. Chrysler is counting on its minivans, Dodge Ram pickups, Jeep lineup and the Dodge Journey cross utility vehicle as the foundation of sales in North America while increasing sales internationally with Fiat's help.

New vehicles include the small Fiat 500 for North America at the end of next year and new versions of the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Chrysler 300.....More

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Chrysler prepares to rehire some employees

After 35,000 job cuts in the past two years and a bankruptcy that shifted control to Italy's Fiat SpA, Chrysler Group is preparing to rehire an unspecified number of salaried workers and ask current workers to put in overtime to get new models to market by mid-2011, according to people familiar with the company's plans.
Chrysler and Fiat Chief Executive Officer Sergio Marchionne is to present a five-year plan to the company's board of directors Friday. If the board approves, he will submit the plan to President Barack Obama's auto task force next week, said company insiders....More

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Paolo Ferrero takes over Chrysler Powertrain

A realignment of Chrysler Group LLC's powertrain division includes the appointment of a new chief from Fiat SpA.

Paolo Ferrero becomes senior vice president of Chrysler Powertrain. He comes from Fiat Powertrain Technologies, where he was vice president of product engineering. Chrysler Group is a partnership with Fiat, and small engines is one area of expertise the Italian automaker brings to the alliance.

All powertrain operations are being unified under Ferrero, who reports directly to Chrysler Chief Executive Officer Sergio Marchionne. The new powertrain division is responsible for engine manufacturing, testing and quality globally and working with the automaker's vehicle engineering group.....More

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Chrysler to start leasing; dealers await sales boost

The Chrysler Group said Wednesday that it will start leasing again, a move that dealers hailed as holding the potential to improve sales.
Through August, Chrysler's U.S. sales are down 39% compared with a year ago. At the Frankfurt auto show Wednesday, Fiat and Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne warned of a further decline. "We are going to see harsh reality in September, it is going to drop," he told the Associated Press....More

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Fiat can hit sales target with Chrysler alone

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Italy's Fiat (FIA.MI) can reach its target of selling between 5.5 and 6 million vehicles with Chrysler alone but the group still considers renewal of Italy's car sale incentives as vital.
If the Italian government did not renew car incentives in 2010 "it would have a disastrous impact," Fiat Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne told reporters at the Frankfurt motor show.....More

Chrysler Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne Has Five Year Plan

FRANKFURT -- Chrysler Group LLC Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne said Wednesday he has designed a five-year plan for the auto maker and plans to share some of the details in November.

Mr. Marchionne, who is also CEO of Fiat SpA, said Fiat expects Chrysler's restructuring to initially progress slowly but significantly improve next year. He said Fiat is scheduled to present the plan for Chrysler by the end of November and that Chrysler will start reporting quarterly results by the end of the year.

"We are going to become a normal reporter in the U.S. hopefully by the end of 2009," Mr. Marchionne said at the Frankfurt auto show. "You will see numbers like you see for everyone else. I think we need to lift the shroud of secrecy from around the house. We have nothing to hide."

Mr. Marchionne said he had a "whole pile of surprises" when Fiat took control of the bankrupt Chrysler in June.......More

Monday, September 14, 2009

Marchionne Managing Chrysler Means 5 Mobile Devices in Backpack

Sept. 14 (Bloomberg) -- To save Chrysler Group LLC, Chief Executive Officer Sergio Marchionne has to create a mid-size sedan that can compete with the world’s best. It’s a three- to five-year job, and he may have two years to do it.

Chrysler, which got a $15 billion government bailout, may be out of cash in 24 months if he doesn’t return the Auburn Hills, Michigan-based company to profitability. Developing a car to rival perennial top sellers Toyota Camry and Honda Accord would normally take at least three years, analysts say.

Marchionne, 57, the CEO of Fiat SpA who brought that company back from near ruin, stepped into the toughest challenge of his career by taking control of Chrysler. Failure may mean not only the demise of the third-largest U.S. automaker and tens of thousands of jobs, it may prevent Marchionne from turning Turin, Italy-based Fiat into a global player.

“He’s going to have a much harder time than at Fiat,” said Maryann Keller, president of consulting firm Maryann Keller & Associates in Stamford, Connecticut. She’s covered the industry since 1972 and said the question is “whether they have time to fix the product problem before they run out of money.” ...More

Friday, September 11, 2009

Chrysler buys out engine plant in Dundee

Firm is likely to build four-cylinder Fiat motors at the factory

Chrysler Group LLC, the automaker run by Fiat SpA since exiting bankruptcy in June, said Thursday it bought out Mitsubishi Motors Corp. and Hyundai Motor Co. stakes in a Michigan engine factory.

The U.S. carmaker took full ownership of the Global Engine Manufacturing Alliance plant in Dundee, effective Aug. 31, said a statement. Financial terms weren't disclosed. The venture, formed in 2003, has been making four-cylinder engines used in Chrysler vehicles.

Buying out the two partners clears the way for Chrysler to produce Fiat-designed engines. Fiat owns 20 percent of the Auburn Hills-based automaker and can get an additional 5 percent by making fuel-efficient engines in the U.S., under terms of Chrysler's U.S. government-aided reorganization.

Chrysler probably intends to build Fiat four-cylinder engines there, said Ed Kim, an AutoPacific analyst in Tustin, Calif. GEMA is a decent engine, but with Fiat in the picture, it makes less sense to continue the GEMA relationship, especially since Chrysler and Fiat have been pretty public with their intention to incorporate small-displacement Fiat engines....Mike Ramsey and Bill Koenig / Bloomberg News

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Chrysler, Fiat to share spotlight

Chrysler and Fiat will make their first high-profile joint appearance next week at the Frankfurt Motor Show, but the real collaboration on new vehicles is still 18 months to two years away, according to analysts familiar with the companies' product strategies.
While many industry observers have been anticipating the new Chrysler-Fiat product plan, that lineup is still under review by Chrysler's board of directors, including Chrysler and Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne. Details are expected later this year.
Last week, Chrysler said it would show in Frankfurt a new 2010 version of its Dodge Caliber hatchback that will be powered by a 2.2-liter diesel engine supplied by Mercedes-Benz and a freshly designed interior.--...More

Gov to shift its stakes in GM and Chrysler to independent trust

By Silla Brush - 09/09/09 The federal government should consider shifting its massive stakes in General Motors and Chrysler into an independent trust to provide better oversight and transparency, a government watchdog panel will report on Wednesday.

The government has supported the U.S. auto industry with more than $70 billion in bailout aid and has taken large stakes in both companies as they try to dramatically revamp their operations.---...More

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Chrysler: Dodge Ram No. 1 in vehicle accessories

The Dodge Ram full-size pickup boasts the most accessories of any vehicle in Chrysler Group LLC's lineup, the automaker said Tuesday.

The Jeep Wrangler is a close second, followed by the Chrysler Town & Country and Dodge Grand Caravan minivans, the automaker said.

Chrysler, which is partnered with Fiat SpA, wants to bump up awareness of the Mopar brand of accessories. Under new Chief Executive Officer Sergio Marchionne, who is also CEO of Fiat, Chrysler has restructured its management team to support four brands: Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep and Mopar.

Ram owners spend an average of $389 on Mopar accessories, with more than 70 items to choose from, the automaker said. ..More

Chryslers New Ram Plan Poses Brand Jam

Chrysler is potentially headed for a brand problem that will rival the pickle that GM is trying to extricate itself from.

Here is the deal. Chrysler has three main brands at the moment: Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep. But it has made it clear to the ad agencies pitching its ad account that it is splitting off its pickup truck and commercial vehicle business off to a new brand?Ram.

That?s right. Going forward, and as soon as Chrysler has the idea to run with, the pickup it sells now won?t be sold as Dodge Ram, but rather?.Ram. Other vehicles that will come from the Fiat-Chrysler tie up in the commercial segment will also be called Ram.

So, now we are up to four brands to support. Now, add the Fiat 500, which will be sold as a Fiat when it arrives in Chrysler showrooms in 2011. And, don?t forget Alfa Romeo, which Fiat will sell through Chrysler distribution in key markets that make sense for the Italian sport car maker.

This seems like a lot of brand differentiation to manage and support by a company that has been poor at both.

As I look at auto sales numbers through August, I see a 9.2% market share for Chrysler spread among the three brands it has. That share is inevitably going to go down as the company pares models. Indeed, Merrill Lynch projects that Chrysler loses a whopping five to six points of share in the next four years unless it comes up with some product surprises from the Fiat alliance.--...More

Company will add 10,000 units to Dodge Caliber production this year

AUBURN HILLS, Mich., Sept. 2 /PRNewswire/ -- Anticipating customer demand for
the fuel-efficient Dodge Caliber, Chrysler Group LLC is returning the second
shift of production at the Belvidere (Ill.) Assembly Plant effective October
5, 2009.

The action will increase Dodge Caliber production by 10,000 units for the
North American and international markets through the end of the year, while
maintaining planned production levels of Jeep(R) Compass and Patriot, the
other fuel-efficient Chrysler Group vehicles built at the facility in
Belvidere, Illinois.

"We are taking this action in response to increasing demand for our most
fuel-efficient products," said Michael J. Accavitti, President and CEO, Dodge
Brand, Chrysler Group LLC. "However, we are cautious about the continued
volatility in the industry and will monitor demand in order to respond to
market conditions."

The increased second shift production will add approximately 850 employees at
the Belvidere facility. This action is in addition to the more than 50,000
units added to production plans at other Chrysler Group plants, that was
announced earlier this week.

The 2009 Dodge Caliber offers top government safety ratings, value, bold
styling and many interior innovations in a compact car that combines Dodge
attitude, SUV versatility, fuel efficiency and affordability.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Old Chrysler defaults on loan payment

The portion of Chrysler LLC that remains in bankruptcy had costs of $10.2 billion in June, which is more money than the company was left with to cover the costs of liquidation.--< a href="">More

Friday, September 4, 2009

Old Chrysler's costs outstrip assets

The portion of Chrysler LLC that remains in bankruptcy had costs of $10.2 billion in June, which is more than the amount the company was left with to cover the costs of liquidation.
The June operating report for Old Carco LLC, the name for the bankrupt pieces of the automaker, was filed with the New York bankruptcy court Friday. Chrysler LLC filed for bankruptcy April 30, and the choice assets were sold to a new entity, Chrysler Group LLC, which was formed in partnership with Fiat SpA on June 10.

Former Chief Financial Officer Ron Kolka was put in charge of winding down the assets of Old Carco, which contain seven assembly plants, almost 3,000 vehicles valued at $51 million and contracts with dealers and suppliers that were not transferred to the new Chrysler.--...More

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Chrysler Showing interest In Closed GM Plants

Prospective buyers eyeing sites considered difficult to unload

Foreign and domestic automakers have expressed interest in buying factories being sold by the former General Motors Corp. as part of its bankruptcy case.

The others are located in Wilmington, Del., Shreveport, La., and Moraine, Ohio. The old GM also has five stamping and six powertrain plants.

Industry analysts said any of the assembly plants would give a foreign automaker, perhaps a Chinese or Indian company, entry into the U.S. market or might interest Chrysler Group LLC, which will produce cars made in conjunction with its new partner, Italy's Fiat SpA...More

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Several models sell out in August

Chrysler Group LLC today reported a 5 percent sales increase compared with July 2009 despite low inventory levels on a number of popular nameplates.

Dealership traffic continued at a high level during the month of August, in part due to the U.S. government’s Car Allowance Rebate System (CARS), more commonly known as “cash for clunkers.”

“Chrysler Group had another strong sales month in August with the majority of Chrysler Group nameplates posting year-over-year or month-over-month sales improvements,” Peter Fong, President and Chief Executive Officer–Chrysler Brand and Lead Executive for the Sales Organization, said. “The CARS program gave a boost to the industry in August, and as a result, we’ve increased production by more than 50,000 units, our factories are full-steam ahead building Chrysler, Jeep® and Dodge vehicles for customers and replenishing dealer inventories.”
The Chrysler Group reported total U.S. sales for August of 93,222 units, an increase of 5 percent compared with July and a decrease of 15 percent compared with the same time period in 2008. Retail sales for August were 68,958 units. The company finished the month with 100,238 units in inventory, representing a 28-day supply. Inventory is down 74 percent versus August 2008 when it totaled 380,560 units. Overall industry figures for August are projected to come in at an estimated 14.4 million annual sales rate.

“Chrysler Group’s large car, minivan, crossover and truck segments all posted increases in retail sales in August,” Steven Beahm, Vice President–Sales Operations, said. “The Dodge Avenger, Dodge Grand Caravan and Chrysler PT Cruiser were very popular with consumers looking for high-quality, fuel-efficient vehicles.”...More

Chrysler Group Sells Out of Many Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge Vehicles In August

Chrysler Group LLC reports August U.S. Sales Increases

AUBURN HILLS, Mich., Sept. 1 /PRNewswire/ --

-- Chrysler Group LLC U.S. sales up 5 percent compared with previous
despite low inventory levels on several vehicles
-- Seventeen out of 26 nameplates post year-over-year and/or
month-over-month retail sales increases, including five out of six
Jeep(R) nameplates
-- Jeep Grand Cherokee sales up 62 percent versus previous year
-- Dodge Grand Caravan sales increase 13 percent compared with August
-- Chrysler 300 sales increase 17 percent compared with August 2008
-- Chrysler PT Cruiser retail sales increase for second consecutive
up 100 percent compared with August 2008

-- Mopar(R) parts and accessories sales increased 5 percent compared with

Chrysler Group LLC today reported a 5 percent sales increase compared with
July 2009 despite low inventory levels on a number of popular nameplates.
Dealership traffic continued at a high level during the month of August, in
part due to the U.S. government's Car Allowance Rebate System (CARS), more
commonly known as "cash for clunkers."

"Chrysler Group had another strong sales month in August with the majority of
Chrysler Group nameplates posting year-over-year or month-over-month sales
improvements," said Peter Fong, President and Chief Executive Officer-Chrysler
Brand and Lead Executive for the Sales Organization, Chrysler Group LLC. "The
CARS program gave a boost to the industry in August, and as a result, we've
increased production by more than 50,000 units, our factories are full-steam
ahead building Chrysler, Jeep(R) and Dodge vehicles for customers and
replenishing dealer inventories."

Chrysler Group reported total U.S. sales for August of 93,222 units, an
increase of 5 percent compared with July and a decrease of 15 percent compared
with the same time period in 2008. Retail sales for August were 68,958 units.
The company finished the month with 100,238 units in inventory, representing a
28-day supply. Inventory is down 74 percent versus August 2008 when it totaled
380,560 units. Overall industry figures for August are projected to come in at
an estimated 14.4 million SAAR.

"Chrysler Group's large car, minivan, crossover and truck segments all posted
increases in retail sales in August," said Steven Beahm, Vice President-Sales
Operations, Chrysler Group LLC. "The Dodge Avenger, Dodge Grand Caravan and
Chrysler PT Cruiser were very popular with consumers looking for high-quality,
fuel-efficient vehicles."

August Brand Sales Highlights

-- Seventeen out of 26 nameplates posted year-over-year and/or
month-over-month retail sales increases, including five out of six
nameplates. Nameplates with increased retail sales are:
-- Chrysler Sebring Sedan/Convertible, Chrysler 300, Chrysler PT
Cruiser, Chrysler Town & Country, Jeep Wrangler, Jeep Liberty,
Jeep Compass, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Jeep Commander, Dodge Caliber,
Dodge Avenger, Dodge Charger, Dodge Challenger, Dodge Journey,
Dakota, Dodge Ram and Dodge Sprinter
-- Jeep Grand Cherokee U.S. sales increased 62 percent (7,679 units)
compared with August 2008 and 118 percent versus the previous month
-- Chrysler 300 U.S. sales increased 17 percent versus August 2008 (4,320
units) and increased 88 percent versus July
-- Chrysler PT Cruiser retail sales were up 100 percent (3,819 units)
compared with August 2008 and increased 45 percent compared with July.
August is the second consecutive month of year-over-year sales
for Chrysler PT Cruiser
-- Dodge Grand Caravan U.S. sales were up 13 percent (10,648 units)
compared with August 2008 and increased 27 percent versus July,
representing the second consecutive month of sales increases
-- Dodge Avenger U.S. sales increased 16 percent (4,118 units) compared
with August 2008
-- Mopar(R) parts and accessories sales increased 5 percent compared with

-- Mopar introduces new accessories that will help consumers Refresh
Ride, including: New Garmin(TM) nuvi(R) navigation systems, new Jeep
Wrangler door kits and 2010 MY Dodge Ram chrome accessories


Chrysler Group LLC today announced the following incentives valid today
through September 30, 2009:

2009 Model Year Vehicles:
Chrysler Group is pleased to offer 0 percent financing for up to 72 months
through GMAC Financial Services or up to $4,500 Consumer Cash on select 2009
model year Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge vehicles.

2010 Model Year Vehicles:
On select 2010 model Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge vehicles, limited Consumer Cash
of up to $2,000 or attractive financing rates through GMAC Financial Services
are available.

About Chrysler Group LLC
Chrysler Group LLC, formed in 2009 from a global strategic alliance with Fiat
Group, produces Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Mopar and Global Electric Motors (GEM)
brand vehicles and products. With the resources, technology and worldwide
distribution network required to compete on a global scale, the alliance
builds on Chrysler's culture of innovation - first established by Walter P.
Chrysler in 1925 - and Fiat's complementary technology - from a company whose
heritage dates back to 1899.

Headquartered in Auburn Hills, Mich., Chrysler Group LLC's product lineup
features some of the world's most recognizable vehicles, including the
Chrysler 300, Jeep Wrangler and Dodge Ram. Fiat will contribute world-class
technology, platforms and powertrains for small- and medium-sized cars,
allowing Chrysler Group to offer an expanded product line including
environmentally friendly vehicles

Dodge Ram pickup is only new Chrysler for '10

Chrysler has only one all-new vehicle for 2010 but is adding fuel-efficient versions of existing products and making more features standard in a lineup that must carry it through next year.

Competes with: Ford F-Series, Chevy Silverado
Looks like: A bigger version of the redesigned Ram 1500
Drivetrain: 383-hp, 6.7-liter diesel

Monday, August 31, 2009

United Way to get $525,000 from Chrysler PAC

Money in Chrysler's dormant political action committee fund totaling $525,000 will be donated to the United Way, The Detroit News has learned.
Click Here For More

Friday, August 28, 2009

Chrysler may be ending partnership in Dundee | Detroit Free Press |

Chrysler Group LLC has removed logos of Hyundai and Mitsubishi from the entrance of the Global Engine Manufacturing Alliance plant in Dundee, in an apparent move to end the four-year-old partnership and take full control of the factory.

Chrysler spokesmen declined to confirm that the partners' logos were removed or that the partnership is being dissolved. Hyundai and Mitsubishi also had no comment. But employees at the plant, who asked not to be named, said Chrysler executives have communicated their intent to end the alliance.
Chrysler may be ending partnership in Dundee | Detroit Free Press |

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Thursday, August 27, 2009

Chrysler absent from buzz on electric cars

Among Chrysler Group's toughest challenges in life after bankruptcy is changing the perception that it lags competitors in bringing affordable small or midsize hybrid electric vehicles to market.

Last September, Chrysler said the first of its battery-powered ENVI models, which contain a small gasoline engine, would reach showrooms by the end of 2010. Three other electric vehicles were to be introduced by 2013.

But today, it is unclear whether new CEO Sergio Marchionne, who has been actively revamping Chrysler's product plans, remains committed to that plan. Fiat, like many European automakers, including Chrysler's former owner, Daimler AG, has been more committed to diesels than hybrids or electric models....More

Big 3 sales fade as 'clunkers' wraps up

Low inventories cited in sinking U.S. share of incentive program

David Shepardson / Detroit News Washington Bureau

Washington -- The Detroit Three automakers' share of "cash for clunkers" sales fell sharply, compared to foreign nameplates, in the final week of the $3 billion incentive program.

General Motors Co., Ford Motor Co. and Chrysler Group LLC sold 38.6 percent, or about 266,000 of the nearly 700,000 clunker replacements. That's far below their combined 45.3 percent share of 2009 auto sales.

The U.S.-based companies said they were hampered by a comparative shortage of small, fuel-efficient vehicles that buyers were seeking and that the Asian automakers provided....Freep--More

Marchionne makes himself at home with new condo

Sergio Marchionne is a man with two jobs and now two homes on two continents.

The chief executive officer of Chrysler Group LLC in Auburn Hills and Fiat SpA in Turin, Italy, has purchased a condo in Metro Detroit, where he is spending a lot of time restructuring the ailing U.S. automaker.

Purchasing a place to call home in Birmingham can be seen as a commitment to the area as well as to the automaker, which was not the case with the last man whose job it was to turn Chrysler around.

Marchionne "needs to be visible," said David Cole, chairman of the Center for Automotive Research in Ann Arbor. "If he's going to be CEO, he needs to be here."

Nissan, Chrysler cancel deal | The Detroit News

Nissan Motor Co. and Chrysler Group LLC have dropped their plans to produce vehicles for each other.

The two automakers agreed early last year to pool their volumes in the full-size pickup and subcompact segments, but doubts about the projects arose after Chrysler teamed up with Italy's Fiat SpA.

"For the past several months, teams from both companies have been studying the viability of the projects in light of significant changes in business conditions since the projects were announced," the two automakers said in a joint statement.


"Today, it was decided it was in the best interests of both companies to end the projects."

Last year, before Chrysler joined forces with Fiat, it agreed to produce a full-size pickup for Nissan, while the Japanese automaker agreed to make two subcompacts for Chrysler.

But Fiat, a small car specialist, will provide Chrysler with small-car underpinnings and sell at least one of its own cars, the 500, in the United States.

Nissan, Chrysler cancel deal | | The Detroit News

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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Sterling Heights may be leased from New Chrysler

(Bloomberg) -- Chrysler Group LLC, the U.S. automaker Fiat SpA controls, may delay closing the plant that makes its mid-size sedans for at least a year until the company creates new models, people familiar with the situation said.

The factory in Sterling Heights, Michigan, may be leased from Old Carco LLC, Chrysler’s predecessor now in bankruptcy, to keep making the Dodge Avenger and Chrysler Sebring after a production accord ends next year, said three people, who declined to be named because the matter isn’t final.

The potential delay reflects the difficulty the combined company faces in retooling existing factories and making new models. The plant is the only Chrysler site that manufactures - mid-size sedans, and the company hasn’t said whether it will shift production or phase out Avenger and Sebring.
Chrysler Said to Consider Keeping Plant Open for Mid-Size Cars -

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Monday, August 24, 2009

Fiat 500 to test Chrysler

Chrysler Canada Inc. plans to begin selling the Fiat 500 subcompact in early 2011, providing an early test of how the alliance between the two auto makers will address the most glaring problem at the No. 3 Detroit company: the collapse in sales of its passenger cars.
Fiat 500 to test Chrysler - The Globe and Mail

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Friday, August 21, 2009

Jim Press To Leave Chrysler

DETROIT -- Chrysler Group LLC Deputy Chief Executive Jim Press is planning to leave the auto maker before the end of the year, according to three people who have been informed of the plan.

Mr. Press, a former star at Toyota Motor Corp., was the sole member of Chrysler's top executive ranks to be retained after the company emerged from a federally funded bankruptcy in June. He was kept on as a special adviser to Sergio Marchionne, who now serves as CEO of both Chrysler and its partner, Fiat SpA.

.Mr. Press, 62 years old, is expected to leave Chrysler by the end of November, according to one of the people informed of the plan.

Chrysler spokesman Gualberto Ranieri declined to comment. A spokeswoman for the U.S. Treasury, which brokered the Fiat alliance as part of the government's bailout of Chrysler, also declined comment.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Chrysler's Creditors Sue Daimler Over Transfers Before 2007 Sale

David McLaughlin

Chrysler's creditors say German auto maker Daimler AG intentionally defrauded them through a restructuring of Chrysler on the eve of its 2007 sale.

In a new lawsuit filed against Daimler, the creditors offer new details about their claims that Daimler stripped Chrysler of billions of dollars in assets for its own benefit before unloading the struggling U.S. auto maker.

"These exchanges enriched Daimler at the expense of the many Chrysler creditors who now are unable to look to these assets to satisfy their claims," the creditors said in the complaint.

The lawsuit, filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan Monday, comes after a judge ruled last Thursday that committee representing Chrysler's unsecured creditors could sue Daimler in an effort to increase their recovery from Chrysler's bankruptcy case.

A Daimler spokeswoman, Julia Engelhardt, said the claims in the lawsuit "are without merit."

"We will vigorously defend ourselves against these claims, which we believe are completely baseless," she said.

Creditors say that in early 2007, as Chrysler struggled under a heavy debt load and falling auto sales, Daimler faced the risk that it could be on the hook for billions of dollars in Chrysler obligations, including $17.5 billion for retiree health benefits and $5 billion in unfunded pension costs.

To avoid this risk, Daimler decided to unload Chrysler, which it bought in 1998. But before doing that, creditors say, it orchestrated the restructuring plan in the spring of 2007.

Under the plan, Daimler transferred valuable Chrysler assets to other Daimler-controlled entities. It also left assets in the group of Chrysler companies but separated them so they were no longer subject to claims from creditors, making them more valuable.

The lawsuit says the "most egregious" of these steps came when Daimler transferred Chrysler's most valuable business - its U.S. and Canadian financing subsidiaries - to a new Chrysler holding company.

By becoming a sister company of Chrysler rather than a subsidiary, the finance arm escaped potential creditor claims, according to the lawsuit. As a result, Daimler got a "substantially better price" for Chrysler when it sold an 80% stake to Cerberus Capital Management in 2007 for $7.4 billion.

After filing for bankruptcy in April, the bulk of Chrysler assets were sold to a new company owned by Fiat SpA, the U.S. and Canadian governments and the United Auto Workers union.

Besides Daimler, the lawsuit names four former members of Chrysler's board of directors. The complaint seeks unspecified damages.

Lawyers for the creditors committee say any proceeds from the lawsuit would go to paying off creditors, a group that includes the U.S. government and secured lenders that received $2 billion from the bankruptcy sale, giving them a recovery of about 29 cents on the dollar.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Chrysler to make Fiat in Mexico: report

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Chrysler Group is planning to produce Fiat SpA's (FIA.MI) Fiat 500 subcompact at a Chrysler plant in Mexico, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
Chrysler is also considering what other Fiat models to introduce to the U.S. market, under directions from its Italian partner, the paper reported on its website on Sunday.

Plans also include making a small Fiat engine for the 500 at a Chrysler plant in Trenton, Michigan, and building a Fiat-derived compact car slightly larger than the 500 in the United States, a source told the paper.

The Toluca, Mexico plant, which currently makes the Dodge Journey crossover and PT Cruiser, is an attractive home for the 500 because cars could be exported to South and Central America where the Fiat brand is popular, the Journal reported.

Fiat acquired a 20 percent stake in Chrysler and entered into agreements to give it access to Fiat technology and platforms. Chrysler filed for bankruptcy in April.

Chrysler representatives were not immediately available for comment

Friday, August 7, 2009

Fiat to takeover historic carmaker Bertone to design future cars for Chrysler

MILAN (AP) — The Italian automaker Fiat on Thursday won a bid to take over the bankrupt Italian car company Bertone, which will help design cars for the U.S. automaker Chrysler, the Italian Economic Development Ministry said.

Fiat, which owns a controlling stake in Chrysler, has pledged to invest euro150 million over the next three years in Bertone, representing the best offer for investors, the ministry said.

Bertone has specialized designing cars over its 97-year history for such brands as Fiat, Ferrari, Alfa Romeo and Lamborghini.

"The sale to Fiat guarantees the future of a historic Piemontese company. In fact, the plan foresees the reabsorption of 1,137 workers, who will be gradually reinserted into their jobs, and the integration with Chrysler for the production in Italy of some models for the American auto company," Economic Development Minister Claudio Scajola said in a statement.

Fiat took a 20-percent controlling stake in Chrysler in June, and its CEO Sergio Marchionne is running both automakers. The deal was based on the transfer to Chrysler of clean-engine and small-car technology, but Marchionne has recently said that he underestimated the value of Chrysler technology, knowledge and platforms for Fiat.

Among the models designed by Bertone are the Opel Astra, Alfa Romeo 2600 Sprint, the Fiat Punto Cabriolet and the BMW Garmisch 2200Ti, the forerunner of the BMW 5-series.

Bertone filed for bankruptcy protection in 2007, and stayed away from the Geneva Auto Show last year for the first time in more than 50 years due to its financial constraints.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Magna plans factory at former Chrysler site

The Detroit News
Highland Park -- The site of the former Chrysler Corp. headquarters could soon be revived with a new automotive components plant.

Officials from Magna International Inc., North America's largest auto supplier, are scheduled to appear today before the Michigan Economic Growth Authority to secure tax incentives for an automotive seating facility at the site, officials confirmed Monday.

Plans are still pending approval from the state and officials, but the plant could create about 400 jobs, said Dennis Niemiec, a spokesman for Wayne County Executive Robert Ficano, who helped develop the deal.

"Mr. Ficano has been working a long time trying to get an auto facility in Wayne County," Niemiec said.

Niemiec said Ficano had been working with Magna International officials for at least the last five years to pursue a possible venture.

Representatives for Magna International, which is based in Aurora, Ontario, and has offices in Troy as well as operations in about 25 countries, could not be immediately reached for comment Monday night.

A number of projects were examined but an automotive plant "was always in the discussion," Niemiec said.

In 2005, officials approved a horse racing license requested by Toronto-based Magna Entertainment Corp., which is at least partly funded by rents and fees from Magna International plants.

Magna had proposed a $100 million, Las Vegas-style entertainment complex on 212 acres at Interstate 94 and Vining near Detroit Metropolitan Airport that was to create 1,000 jobs

Chrysler Fiat Production Of The 500 At Warren Truck or Belvidere?

Chrysler Fiat is not giving up any information after Channel 4 Detroit announced that Fiat was considering building the Fiat 500 at the Warren Truck Assembly Plant. Which WTAP currently makes the Dodge Ram/Dakota and was slated to build the Rambox option that came from St. Louis. If Chrysler is to launch the 500 by 2011 they must make a decision soon.
The Belvidere Plant builds the Dodge Caliber which is still going to build the 2010 model.
There are a few good questions,which plant will lose their current production model? will Fiat build a new plant? or will production go to Mexico?

Channel 4 Fiat 500 Report--Video

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Meet the Dodge/Fiat 500

Here are some pics and stats of the super small car that is selling like crazy in Europe.The Fiat 500. Which would be rebadged to the Dodge 500 or maybe the Dodge Hornet???