• Sep 8, 2009
Fiat Ducato - Click above for high-res image gallery

Easy come, easy go – that's apparently Chrysler's luck with repurposed European-market work trucks. For the last few years, Chrysler has offered the German-designed Sprinter van under the Dodge nameplate. Mercedes-Benz wants its rig back, so it's taking the well-regarded work vehicle out of Pentastar dealerships and anointing about 120 of its own dealerships as Sprinter outlets. Consider it more terms of Chrysler's divorce from its one-time masters.

Now that Chrysler's ownership has moved south to Italy's Fiat, the Euro-work-truck hole in the showroom may be filled by something from the new management's portfolio. The Iveco Daily from Fiat's work truck division might easily fill the Sprinter's void. About the same size as the full-length Sprinter, the Daily might be a little too much for buyers considering the shorter versions of the captive Daimler. Fiat's Ducato might be a better fit, offering the tall format that Sprinter buyers have found useful without being quite as large at the Iveco.

If either truck heads this way to fill the void, it will not be badged as a Fiat. Gualberto Ranieri, Chrysler's Senior Vice President of Communications, has asserted that "the only Fiat vehicle in North America will be the Fiat 500. Period."



[Source: Automotive News - Sub. Req'd]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 18 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      Doesn't really matter. Like the Sprinter neither will be remotely competitive in this market as anything beyond parcel delivery. Flip a coin, bring one over and start work on a dedicated van for the North American market that can actually compete with the GM twins and the econoline.
      • 5 Years Ago
      i've a fiat scudo a it's sooo nice!
      • 5 Years Ago
      The Sprinter proved that the high roof/high capacity configuration had a market in America, even extending to Fed Ex and UPS. Ford and GM still use the same basic van configurations that have been the American standard for 30 years, so the market is open to new players.

      I think Fiat/Chrysler should role the dice, and bring both vans to the US. With the Daily and Ducato they will be able to compete with both the Sprinter and the new Transit Connect from Ford. If the vans prove economically viable, Chrysler has plenty of unused production capacity to begin producing them here.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Wider and with a lower floor than Sprinter. The only thing which could be a problem is the fact of Ducato is FWD. And a Fiat :P
      • 5 Years Ago
      That Ducato is so ugly it's cool. Put some side windows in it and I'd enjoy hauling the kids around. It reminds me of the old COEs from the 40s and 50s.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Wow, way to stay on the ball Autoblog. Myself and others had been saying this since it was announced Dodge would no longer get the Sprinter. It was posted all over your comments section for that story. Better yet, put in a comments section that doesn't suck (ie, drops comments, puts them in the wrong spot, has a "reply" button for comment threads that wrap around pages, has page links at the top of the comments section in addition to the bottom, allows the use of "" without treating them as HTML code, etc...)
      • 5 Years Ago
      A Ducato to transport your Ducati.
      • 5 Years Ago
      "Flip a coin, bring one over and start work on a dedicated van for the North American market that can actually compete with the GM twins and the econoline."
      Strangely if the GM twins and the Econoline, were that good, it is odd that Ford and GM have not got around to exporting them like virtually all other manufacturers on the planet.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Chrysler needs this van. The Sprinter was overall a much better solution than the Ford E and the GM van that are just way too outdated.

      The only bad thing I can say about this type of mini-van is not about the van itself but the use people have for them.... For the last 5 months the local freight company that services FedEx has been using a Sprinter.... Don't buy a Spinter if your daily job is to deliver load/unload freaking 500 lbs commercial pallets!!! Other than that, great little trucks.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The Daimler/Chrysler Sprinter cab chassis itineration has been very popular with RV'ing folks. It is used as the Class "C" motorhome platform for many RV manufacturers in the U.S..

      The 5 and 6 cylinder Sprinter diesels are very good for mileage, even when carrying the large Class "C" motorhome chassis. However they all come with automatic trannys.

      If the iveco/Fiat platform is used in place of the Sprinter, they will definitely need to have an "automatic" tranny offering, as most RV'ers will want that in their campers.

      Also, Daimler is going to be sellling their Mercedes badged Sprinter in the U.S. even after the Dodge connection is severed. So RV manufacturers will still have the Sprinter platform.
      joynerz
      • 3 Years Ago
      Looks like M-B had a winner. To take it from a large dealership network and putting in only 120 dealerships sounds like it's an idea from the person who also came up with the idea of buying Chrysler to begin with.
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