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Fiat, Chrysler dealer separation to end

by Bill Cawthon on

Automotive News’ Larry Vellequette wrote that FCA will help Fiat dealers struggling with slow-selling cars by finally allowing them to consolidate Fiat and Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep-Ram facilities.

As of the end of February, dealers had sold 5,587 new Fiats, an average of 27 cars per month per retailer. However, according to a source cited by Mr. Vellequette, two-thirds of Fiat dealer sell fewer than ten new cars per month, and less than half are profitable.

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All but 42 of the 206 Fiat dealers also have Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep-Ram franchises, and FCA estimated that a dealer selling 15 Fiats a month could save about $180,000 per year by combining facilities. Those who keep the brands separated can get around $120,000 in  rent subsidies.  Either way, dealers can lump all FCA brands together to meet sales goals and incentives.

FCA will also cut back on the number of trim levels, to reduce price overlap and provide more incentives, including stair-step incentives, to sell Fiat-brand vehicles. Original: Automotive News.

Bill Cawthon grew up in the auto industry in the 1950s. His Dad worked for Chrysler and Bill spent a number of Saturdays down on the plant floor at Dodge Main in Hamtramck. Bill is also the U.S. market correspondent for just-auto.com, a British auto industry publication, and a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association, which has named the Jeep Grand Cherokee the “SUV of Texas” several times and named the Ram 1500 as the “Truck of Texas” two years running.

Bill has owned five Plymouths (including the only 1962 “Texan”), one Dodge and one Chrysler and is still trying to figure out how to justify a Wrangler. He also has owned at least one of every 1:87 scale model of a Chrysler product. You can reach him directly at (206) 888-7324 or by using the form.


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