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2014 200, Avenger wind-down

by David Zatz on

RamMan reported that the Chrysler 200 and Dodge Avenger are no longer available for ordering, indicating that the Sterling Heights plant is planning an imminent final build-out of the midsized cars.

The 2015 Chrysler 200 is reportedly scheduled to be shown at the Detroit Auto Show in January; it is expected to have a choice of the 2.4, 3.2, and 3.6 liter engines, the gee-whiz auto-parking features of the KL Cherokee, a standard nine-speed automatic, and an all wheel drive option (most likely with late availability).

One Detroit newspaper claimed that the existing Dodge Avenger would continue in production for several years; the Sterling Heights plant, with its massive new body shop, is certainly capable of keeping production alive, but so far there has been no confirmation of that plan. The idea would be to both keep the Avenger name alive until a rear wheel drive variant (whose basic platform and architecture would be shared with Alfa Romeo) was available, and to provide a low-priced alternative to the high-tech new 200. This would also allow Chrysler to do a slow, gradual ramp-up, and if transmission supply constraints slowed 200 production, Avenger could fill the gap.

Some believe, on the other hand, that a new Dodge Avenger based closely on the 200 will be launched as a temporary measure. This would prevent the moderately self-destructive “Avenger vs Dart” competition at dealerships, where customers have been diverted from Darts by steep incentives on Avengers. (Reducing Avenger incentives would presumably have the same effect.)

Either way, customers desiring a current, new Chrysler 200 will have to pick one out from dealer stock from this time on, and the days of the 2014 200 and Avenger are numbered.

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