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2014-15 wiring recall

July 22, 2016 - by David Zatz

FCA is recalling over 400,000 vehicles to prevent stalling, according to Automotive News.  The recall does not yet show on the NHTSA web site or Chrysler’s media page. The issue is software and a wiring harness, and the problem has so far affected only a “small number of vehicles.” Covered in the recall are 2015 Chrysler 200s, Ram ProMaster Citys, Jeep Renegades, and Jeep Cherokees, including some 2014s.  Based on this list, it appears that the specific software and […]

A different big picture?

sergio marchionne
July 22, 2016 - by David Zatz

Pundits have been talking about FCA’s “big picture” and taking CEO Sergio Marchionne at his word when he talks about the need to grow and to include an Asian automaker in the group. But what happens if we look at things that have not been well publicized by pundits and analysts? Namely… FCA has been buying up suppliers, including VM (diesel engine makers), Magneti Marelli, and Teksid; and has been bolstering its own internal parts capabilities. For example, Chrysler has […]

Which Jeeps are hits in Europe?

July 21, 2016 - by David Zatz

Jeep sells a full line in Europe, but it’s been clear that its skyrocketing popularity has been entirely due to the Renegade. What’s the status of the other models? The Compass, once a decent seller, has fallen to 161 sales for January-May 2016, according to Automotive News Europe. What’s more, it didn’t do much better last year, with just 349 sold. The Renegade, in contrast, moved from 22,132 in Jan-May 2015 to 33,322 this year. The next best seller […]

Mopar returns to Top Fuel racing

leah Pritchett
July 21, 2016 - by David Zatz

Mopar and Pennzoil® will sponsor the NHRA Top Fuel Dragster driven by Leah Pritchett, returning Mopar to the class in which it first established its reputation for excellence at the dragstrip. Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) driver Leah Pritchett will compete at select events in 2016, debuting the blue Omega M on her dragster at the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals, scheduled for July 22-24 at Bandimere Speedway, near Denver. Drag racing icon “Big Daddy” Don Garlits captured most of his Top […]

124 dealers get awards

July 21, 2016 - by David Zatz

The first 124 Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram and FIAT dealerships have earned the 2016 Customer First Award for Excellence, created by FCA, its dealers, and J.D. Power to increase customer satisfaction with the dealerships. A second group of award winners will be announced in early 2017. The initiative was rolled out to dealerships in October 2015. For a list of the winners, see our Customer First Awards page. Limited-feature AMP version for low-speed cellphones. Does not include comments […]

FCA’s new chief of regs

July 20, 2016 - by David Zatz

Engineering executive Mark Chernoby, who joined Chrysler Corporation in 1985, is now Fiat Chrysler Automobile’s global chief technical compliance officer. The 55 year old engineer will lead a new compliance office, “overseeing all regulatory compliance programs” around the world, from safety to gas mileage. Sergio Marchionne noted that central oversight and coordination is needed as new standards appear around the world. The office will have to evaluate and approve all new and changed technical standards, including emissions, presumably to avoid […]

Resurrection of Fiat San Antonio

Closed Fiat studio
July 20, 2016 - by David Zatz

Last year, Allpar reported the closure of both Fiat “studios” in San Antonio, Texas, leaving Fiat owners in the seventh largest US city stranded — the next closest studio is nearly 80 miles away, in Austin, a long distance for service. Now, though, the Principle Auto Group appears to have secured both Fiat and Alfa Romeo franchises, and is planning a new Fiat studio in a prime location along Loop 410, using a former Toyota dealership that has […]

Dodge nabs CHP cars

July 20, 2016 - by David Zatz

Dodge announced that the famed California Highway Patrol (CHP) has ordered over 580 Dodge Charger Pursuit police cars, to be delivered over the next two years. The CHP is the largest state police agency in the nation, and this is their first major purchase since the end of a low-balled, three-year exclusive deal to buy Explorer-based Ford Police Utility crossovers. The CHP-Ford contract was a deciding factor in the move of other fleets from sedans to crossovers and SUVs. The contract […]

Is this the future of the Dodge Dart?

July 20, 2016 - by David Zatz

The Dodge Dart will die in September. Long live the Dodge Dart. The Fiat Viaggio, essentially a Dart with a lower-cost suspension (hatchback, too, with Ottimo), will soon enter its second generation.  Could the Viaggio be that Dart replacement we’ve heard about? Perhaps, this time, including the “Ottimo” hatchback form? If the 2018 Dodge Dart came in early-to-mid 2017, it would come just as the current stockpile of Darts was sold out.  Volvo and GM have both shown that Americans have no compunction […]

Chrysler and the “best dealers” list

Cavender Fiat-Alfa Romeo
July 19, 2016 - by David Zatz

Automotive News has published the results of its annual dealer survey, finding the top one hundred dealerships to work for.  Since employee ratings directly influence customer satisfaction and loyalty, the list is an important measure of future success. The numbers don’t look good for FCA, which has thousands of dealers in the United States, but it does look good for luxury and import brands.  Toyota had ten spots, plus two for Lexus. In contrast, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, and Ram, […]

Regulators relent on 54.5 mpg

July 19, 2016 - by David Zatz

The 54.5 mile per gallon fleet economy target for 2025, already watered down by archaic measurement methods and numerous loopholes, has been dropped as American buyers continue to prefer large engines, large SUVs, and pickups. The EPA, CARB, and NHTSA yesterday released an analysis which noted that though automakers had been making great progress on fuel economy, beating projections, the demand for larger vehicles (and lack of demand for smaller ones) made achieving 54.5 mpg impossible. The agencies concluded that a […]

A salute to the Salute

July 18, 2016 - by David Zatz

The Jeep 75th Salute concept vehicle was shown last week as a  tribute to the modern Wrangler’s military heritage. Based on a two-door Wrangler Sport, it has no B-pillars or doors, and wears Army olive-drab. Allpar now has many more photos of the Salute, some posed with its distant 75-year-old relative.  While quite a bit has changed over the years, with CJs and then the Wrangler growing ever-longer and, recently, more aerodynamic, quite a bit remains the same, too. The Wrangler has nearly five times the […]

GM ruling is good for FCA

July 17, 2016 - by David Zatz

GM had a rough 2014 in terms of recalls and bad publicity, leading a group of lawyers (or class action lawyers, depending on your perspective) to file suit against the company, using racketeering laws.  The premise was that the bad publicity and recalls had damaged their resale value to the tune of $10 billion in damages. U.S. district judge Jesse Furman dismissed their claims from his Manhattan office on Friday.  The precedent may mean that any pending […]

Hands-on Charger Pursuits

July 16, 2016 - by David Zatz

FCA Fleet Operations has set up real-world simulations of the Dodge Charger Pursuit car, but only for police officers in California. The “Charger Pursuit Experience” will be held on on July 19 at the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office Emergency Vehicle Operations Course (EVOC) in Santa Rose,  and on July 21 at the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office Regional Training Center in Dublin, California. Designed for command staff, instructors, fleet managers, and other law enforcement personnel, the experience lets people “get […]

Covering Jeep, Chrysler, Dodge, Ram, and other cars and trucks

Jeep J8 military/NGO truck

CEMA 2016

Salute: a Jeep tribute to the Willys MA

2017 Dodge Neon

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