With all the news swirling around about the downfall of leasing among the Detroit 3, Chrysler has decided to stick Stuart Schorr, Senior Manager, Sales, Mopar and Dealer Communications, in front of the mic to clear up a few things. The first point he makes is that Chrysler LLC dealers can still offer leases to customers from other financial institutions besides Chrysler Financial. While this is true, some of those financial institutions have also backed out of the business of leasing Chrysler vehicles, including Chase Auto Finance. We're not sure how many lease backers that leaves, but the ones remaining will likely be forced to raise lease prices, much like Ford has done with its truck and SUV leases, to protect themselves from losing tons of money when vehicles leased today are eventually turned back in. The second point made by Schorr is that all current leases are not affected and their lease terms will remain in effect. Well we would hope so! Third is that Chrysler Financial will waive the disposition fee if a current lease owner decides to buy his or her vehicle at the end of the lease term. LeaseGuide.com tells us that this fee usually amounts to between $250 and $450. Here's some friendly advice – do not buy your lease vehicle at the end of its contract. Unless you've driven a ridiculously low amount of miles (not likely), your vehicle is worth way less than what Chrysler thought it would be and the disposition fee will not make up the difference. You would effectively be letting Chrysler Financial off the hook for overestimating the car's residual value. Schorr's fourth point is that employee leases and company cars are not affected. Cool, 'cause we were pretty worried about that. At the end of the day, leasing is still a viable option for many people who find the cost agreeable, as we've no doubt learned this past week that the financial institution backing the lease is shouldering the risk.

[Source: Chrysler LLC]


From Chrysler's Firehouse Media Blog

Stuart Schorr is Senior Manager, Sales, Mopar and Dealer Communications

Given the media interest in vehicle leasing, I wanted to take this opportunity to give more details on what customers can expect from Chrysler and their local dealers. Steven Landry, Chrysler Executive Vice President of North American Sales, elaborates in the video above.

1) Chrysler's dealers are still able to offer customers lease financing arrangements with other financial institutions, separate from Chrysler Financial.

2) Current vehicle owners, Chrysler employees and retirees with leased vehicles through Chrysler Financial will not be affected by this shift, and the terms of their contract will remain in force. Chrysler Financial will continue to support and service current Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge lease and balloon-contract holders.

3) Should current lessees purchase their existing lease vehicle, or a new Chrysler, Jeep or Dodge vehicle at the end of their existing lease, Chrysler Financial will waive the disposition fee. Chrysler is also offering a loyalty bonus of up to $750 incremental to most other incentives with the purchase of a new vehicle. Chrysler wants to keep these customers in our family!

4) Chrysler employee lease/company car programs for current and retired salary Chrysler employees, in which vehicles are obtained through the company, are not affected.