Dealer-enthusiast Lloyd Ver Hage

lloyd ver hage
February 6, 2016 - by David Zatz

Lloyd A. Ver Hage, a long-time Chrysler dealer and enthusiast who set up a private museum, died unexpectedly at the age of 82. He had run Ver Hage Motors in Holland, Michigan, for 53 years before retiring to Scottsdale, Arizona. Mr. Ver Hage, an avid car collector, shared his collection with tour groups and car clubs. He served in Korea, had a business degree from the University of Michigan, was active in the Pillar Church for over 50 years, and was on the […]

No Chrysler 300 recall; Charger chocks only

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February 5, 2016 - by Patrick Rall

Shortly after we wrote that the 2011-2016 Dodge Charger was being recalled to hand out wheel chocks, several Chrysler 300 owners contacted us and asked if their cars were included as well. The Chrysler 300 and the Dodge Charger share a many features, including the chassis and undercarriage layout. They should have a similar pinch-weld design holding the unibody together and the same emergency scissor jack, with similar weight distribution, so all of the factors which […]


300S, 200S Alloy Editions: with photos

2016 Chrysler 200C Alloy
February 5, 2016 - by David Zatz

Chrysler has released photos of the new Alloy Editions of the 2016 Chrysler 200S and 300S. They use dark bronze and titanium finishes in select places. (The words “bronze” and “titanium” refer to the finish; to our knowledge, they are not using actual bronze or titanium. Bronze is an alloy, while titanium is an element.) The new cars will debut at the Chicago Auto Show next week, explaining the Chrysler presentation. The cars will list for $27,680 and […]




How are Mopar vans and minivans selling?

February 4, 2016 - by Bill Cawthon

For January, Ram jumped up to become the third largest seller of commercial vans in the United States, beating Nissan and Mercedes. Indeed, the ProMaster, on its own, out-sold all Mercedes vans combined, the GMC Savanna, Nissan NV and NV200, and Chevrolet City Express. The ProMaster City outsold its class-mate, the Chevrolet City Express. Ford continues to dominate commercial van sales, in both large and small classes, by huge margins, partly because the company never left the market and […]


FCA #1 in CUV/SUV sales

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February 4, 2016 - by Bill Cawthon

Thanks to high sales of stalwarts such as the Wrangler and Grand Cherokee, along with outstanding growth from the Dodge Durango and Dodge Journey, FCA was once again the top US crossover/SUV source in January. Dodge  and Jeep sold 74,585 utilities and wagons last month, slipping by General Motors to take the lead with 1,608 more sales. Ford was third. Jeep kicked off 2016 just like it finished 2015: the top brand in the hottest market. US UTILITIES/CROSSOVERS Company Jan […]


Chrysler Alloy Editions

February 4, 2016 - by David Zatz

The “sport” versions of the 2016 Chrysler cars, the 200S and 300S, have a new option: Alloy Editions, using dark bronze and titanium (describing the finishes; the parts do not use bronze or titanium). Photos have not been released. The new cars will debut at the Chicago Auto Show next week, explaining the Chrysler presentation. The cars will list for $27,680 and $36,960 including destination. The new finishes contrast with the S models’ generally blacked-out appearance. The 200S uses a dark […]


Continental recall affects Mopars

February 4, 2016 - by David Zatz

German supplier Continental’s occupant restraint controllers, which  affect airbags and other systems, are being recalled on various brands, including Dodge and Chrysler.  Over 100,000 2009 Dodge Journeys and 2008-2009 minivans are affected. Two incidents have been investigated, revealing that moisture can get into the system and cause the airbags to deploy or the warning lights to go on (the latter is most likely).  There have been seven possibly-related minor injuries and no accidents, so far.  Recall notices will […]


Hitting the minor notes: Charger chock recall

February 4, 2016 - by David Zatz

Half a million 2011-16 Dodge Chargers are in the wild, and there have been three cases where customers changing a tire failed to follow the instructions, which tell them to chock the opposite-side tire. As Automotive News’ Larry Vellequette pointed out, in a sharply worded story, Dodge responded by recalling the car to give all  customers free wheel chocks. These are simple wedges which can, as Mr. Vellequette wrote, be replaced by bricks, hunks of wood, rocks, or other properly […]


Maserati to join Chrysler with hybrids

February 3, 2016 - by David Zatz

Informal sources within FCA told Allpar that the company was working on relatively interchangeable plug-in hybrid systems. The Chrysler Pacifica will hold the first generation of these — not counting the past Chrysler Aspen/Dodge Durango or fleet-only Ram pickups. There will be two systems, one using the nine-speed automatic case (already engineered for the Pacifica) and one using the eight-speed. FCA appears to be focusing on its biggest vehicles first, partly to raise fleet economy numbers, and likely also […]


US sales: Chrysler vs…

jan-us
February 3, 2016 - by David Zatz

Sales figures for all car companies are now out, giving a more clear picture of how well the former Chrysler did last month. Spoiler alert: while FCA stock tanked, Fiat Chrysler did quite well. General Motors remains by far the largest seller in the US, with nearly 204,000 sales for January alone. This is just about one thousand cars more than in January 2015 — nearly a wash.  #2 Ford actually declined by 3%, falling to 172,478, nearly all […]


Jeep’s return to India

February 3, 2016 - by David Zatz

Jeep made its long-awaited return to India at the New Delhi Auto Expo today.  In mid-2016, Jeep will launch its Wrangler Unlimited, Grand Cherokee, and Grand Cherokee SRT. Over half a century ago, Willys licensed the Jeep design to a local company, and Mahindra continues to make light 4x4s that have evolved separately from the Jeep mainstream. India is the fifth largest auto market in the world. Fiat and Chrysler were both popular in the country, through licensed designs, but Fiat Chrysler […]


FCA: cleaner diesels are coming

February 2, 2016 - by David Zatz

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, which has not been found to break emissions rules, announced that it plans to reduce pollution from its popular engines anyway. The highly regarded Fiat MultiJet diesels will get a new calibration, due around April, and selective catalytic pollution-burning systems will be phased in more quickly. The moves are likely unnecessary to comply with current laws, but may be a selling point, avoid future lawsuits, and comply with upcoming regulations more quickly.



FCA México up again

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February 2, 2016 - by David Zatz

FCA México is probably not Sergio Marchionne’s greatest worry, but the company brought in a 3% gain over last January, rising to 8,375 sales. This includes Fiat, Alfa Romeo, and Mitsubishi as well as the Chrysler brands. The Ram 700, a re-branded Fiat Strada, had record sales and was, according to FCA, at the top of its segment. Dodge was the sales leader, with nearly 2,500 units, up 39% thanks largely to 1,190 “Dodge” (Mitsubishi) Attitude sales. The […]


Chrysler sales spike in January

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February 2, 2016 - by Bill Cawthon

Sergio Marchionne warned analysts to expect a drop in sales at some point, as the company let them fall to reach the original projections. That point hasn’t been reached yet. FCA US reported a 7% increase in sales in January, compared with January 2015, well above even the most optimistic analyst forecast. This was the best January sales report in nine years, with 155,037 cars and trucks sold; and it’s the 70th month of consecutive sales gains. Dodge […]


Crossovers replacing sedans: Back to the past

February 1, 2016 - by David Zatz

Sergio Marchionne’s comment that the Dodge Dart and Chrysler 200 would be allowed to “run their course” and then be replaced by cars from a “potential partner” caused a range of emotional reactions. This is not the first time for such thoughts. In the late 1980s, GM, Ford, and Chrysler all lost money on each compact car. Chrysler changed that with the Neon and Cirrus/Stratus, which made hefty profits even while GM and Ford kept losing money.  This time, […]


Viper third in IMSA season opener

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January 31, 2016 - by Bill Cawthon

Fifty-four teams were on hand for the 54th running of the Rolex 24 At Daytona Motor Speedway. The 24-hour event, which concluded today, kicked off the 2016 season for both the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship and the Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Cup. The Riley Motorsports  No. 93 Dodge SRT Viper GT3-R, driven by Ben Keating, Gar Robinson, Jeff Mosing, Eric Foss and Damien Faulkner, finished third in the GT Daytona class and 16th overall. The […]






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