• Jan 11, 2008
The potential partnership between Chrysler and Nissan on which we reported yesterday is officially a done deal, with Nissan agreeing to supply a version of the Versa for Chrysler to sell in South America. This is not, as we were all supposing, a deal that will have the automakers cooperating on any product for the North American market. The two companies, however, are still talking about other ways to buddy up, saying in their press release that they've "agreed to maintain an open dialogue to explore further product-sharing opportunities." It's been reported that Nissan is still interested in Chrysler's truck expertise and it's no secret that the smallest of Detroit's Big Three needs a small car to sell below the Caliber.

This deal, however, is strictly for the South American market. Chrysler is not unfamiliar with this practice of cross-company rebadging, as it sells Dodge-branded Hyundais in Mexico, for instance. So in the end, this partnership appears to be much ado about little. Dodge still has a gaping hole where a small car should be sold in the U.S. and Nissan, despite the advances of Carlos Ghosn towards every domestic U.S. automaker, remains stag.

[Source: Chrysler]

PRESS RELEASE:

Chrysler and Nissan Confirm OEM Product Agreement

Auburn Hills, Mich., Jan 11, 2008 - Chrysler LLC and Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., today announced an agreement for Nissan to supply Chrysler with a new car for limited distribution in South America. Based on the Nissan Versa sedan, the new car will be supplied to Chrysler on an Original Equipment Manufacture (OEM) basis in 2009.
The OEM supply agreement is the second product exchange between the two corporations, with Nissan affiliate JATCO already supplying Chrysler with transmissions since 2004.

"This kind of tactical partnership allows us to maximize product offerings yet minimize costly investments, such as new plant infrastructure, tooling and R&D," said Chrysler LLC President and Vice Chairman Tom LaSorda. "This partnership will give Chrysler nearly immediate access to vehicle segments in which we do not currently compete."

"Nissan has a successful track-record of win-win product exchanges and we are pleased to be entering into this second agreement with Chrysler," said Carlos Tavares, Executive Vice President, Nissan Motor Company.

The two companies have also agreed to maintain an open dialogue to explore further product-sharing opportunities.

Chrysler LLC, headquartered in Auburn Hills, Mich., produces Chrysler, Jeep®, Dodge and Mopar® brand vehicles and products. Its product lineup features some of the world's most recognizable vehicles, including the Chrysler 300, Jeep Wrangler and Dodge Charger. The Chrysler Foundation - the primary source of charitable grants made by Chrysler - annually supports hundreds of charitable organizations with an emphasis on community growth and enrichment, education, arts and culture, public policy, youth development and disaster relief programs throughout the United States and, increasingly, the world. Chrysler is a unit of Cerberus Capital Management.

Nissan Motor Company generated global net revenues of 10.468 trillion yen in 2006. Nissan is present in all major global auto markets selling a comprehensive range of cars, pickup trucks, SUVs and light commercial vehicles under the Nissan and Infiniti brands. Nissan employs over 180,000 people worldwide.

Under the Nissan Value-Up business plan, the company continues to focus on long-term sustainable and profitable growth driven by three commitments:

- To maintain top level of operating profit margin among global automakers

- To achieve global sales of 4.2 million units in 2009

- 20% return on invested capital on average over the course of the plan


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 20 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      Ah this sucks for us North American's. The only problem with the Caliber is that its not a Neon. I don't mind the Caliber at all, and its a fun little CUV - and the non-AWD R/T is actually pretty fun to toss around. But small car it isn't - we NEED a small car desperately, and although I hope the Demon goes into production as well - its not the small car the average consumer needs.

      If they're so terrified of the Neon name, they've got an extensive back catalog of names. A new Dodge Dart perhaps?
      • 7 Years Ago
      Maybe Dodge/Chrylser/Jeep should make their own cars instead of having to borrow them from other manufactures because the ones they actually do make are so bad.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Clio would be great especaily in 4 wheel drive.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Nissan already sells the Versa in South America under the name Tiida, this means they would sell the same product with two different names and brands?
      GM has a bigger presence in some specific countries (like Ecuador) than in the rest of South America so maybe that's where they'll focus.
        • 7 Years Ago
        That's done all the time here in the US... shoot, just look at GMC, the whole brand is pretty much a regadge of Chevy vehicles. Look at the Dodge Dakota and Mitsubishi Raider. Back when Honda sold the Passport, it was literally an Isuzu Rodeo with Honda emblems insted of Isuzu ones. And one of the original Acura SUVs was just a rebadged Isuzu Trooper.
      • 7 Years Ago
      It wasn't long ago that it was rumoured that Chrysler was considering a GM platform for their large trucks and SUVs.

      I predict again that Chrysler could become the first auto company that doesn't make any of its own cars.

      It could sell off its plants to growing companies that needs them, such as Nissan and outsource all of its cars. Small cars to Nissan, Midsized to Mitsubishi (as it already shares...maybe why they suck) Trucks to GM, etc.

      They already outsource major component assembly to other companies that partially assemble Jeeps before the components enter the Jeep plant for final assembly. Third parties assemble larger sections than what is traditionally done.

      It would essentially be like Geo, but under its own company, not just a brand.
        • 7 Years Ago
        The only 'truck' rumors I can recall were the 2mode Hybrid and a Suburban-type vehicle for Dodge - but now that the new CAFE regs are in place, that probably died on the nose-job table.
      • 7 Years Ago
      There is also the dodge branded Chery in Mexico as well...
        • 7 Years Ago
        There are not Dodge branded Cherys here in Mexico... Not yet.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Maybe Dodge/Chrylser/Jeep should make their own cars instead of having to borrow them from other manufactures because the ones they actually do make are so bad.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Brent,

        How is them taking a Nissan and throwing a Dodge badge on it gonna help them turn a profit. They will have to pay a nice percent of sales to Nissan.

        My point was, instead of relying on other automakers, go out and actually design a good car people want! Then you don't need to re-badge someone else's car.
      • 7 Years Ago
      The Versa is better than the Caliber for sure.
        • 7 Years Ago
        The Isuzu sold here are rebadged Chevrolets, and aree built here, in the USA. The profits go to GM.
      • 7 Years Ago
      uhmm, i was just in argentina, and nissan is already marketing the versa hatchback there, renamed as the tiida. so if chrysler sells the versa in SA, it won't be in argentina, and likely not in brazil since argentinian-market cars are made in brazil, and probably sold there too.

      although the whole "bring the clio to america" idea is something i'm in favor of. nissan's 2 biggest mistakes in the US market have been keeping the skylines out, and keeping the renaults out. GT-R repents for one of those sins, the clio would fix the other.
      • 7 Years Ago
      If they could throw a 340ci with an aluminum intake and a 650 double pumper in the new Dart as was in my 69 GTS, I'm all in.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Caliber is boring but so is the Versa, what about a Sebring based on the Altima for America.
      • 7 Years Ago
      All Isuzu vehicles sold in the USA are made in the USA and the profits go to GM. They are all rebadged Chevrolets. Some badged as Isuzus have a higher level of standard equiment model level -vs- model level. The profits thereof, go to GM.
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