• Mar 30, 2010
Think Chrysler is having a banner 2010? A quick glance at the sales charts shows a company in dire need of new product, better quality and a Hail Mary on the showroom floor. But as bad as the situation is right now in Auburn Hills, MI, it appears the company could just about be done bleeding cash.

The Detroit News reports that Chrysler/Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne told a group of reporters that he was committed to breaking even, adding that the company won't lose money on an operations basis this year. Is Sergio being optimistic or is he basing his numbers on cold, hard facts? Who knows, but when asked if there was a chance Team Pentastar could pull of an actual 2010 profit, he reportedly answered "who knows?"

Marchionne also told reporters that Chrysler had $5 billion in cash at the end of 2009, the 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee was on schedule to hit production on May 3, and that 50 percent of all Chrysler Group vehicles will be riding on Fiat platforms by 2014. The Fiat/Chrysler CEO also reiterated his stance that Chrysler would sell 1.1 million vehicles this year and that U.S. auto sales would crest 11 million units in 2010.

It's only fair that Marchionne gave us a state of The Pentastar update given the fact that today marks the one-year anniversary of when the Obama Administration gave Chrysler 30 days of working capital to work out an official tie-up with Fiat.

[Source: The Detroit News]


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  • 27 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      Oops! Sorry folks. What I meant to say was, "Hopefully, his plans and ideas will lead to the company's return to center stage."
      • 4 Years Ago
      I don`t know why so many kick Chrysler around so much.
      I`m not brand loyal or anything among the Detroit 3.
      Those of us who actually own Chrysler vehicles, are for the most part happy with them.
      I still say the full line Chrysler dealer offers the widest varity of vehicles of anyone.
      God bless Chrysler. There would be a black hole in the automotive world if Chrysler were to die.
      With Chrysler`s limited assets they do an admirable job.
      They don`t have the deep pockets that the other big companys do specially after being raped.
      I hope Fiat is a better caretaker than Diamler was.
      I don`t think Fiat has the superiority complex that Diamler has.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Chrysler products are good. Only problem is everyone elses are better. They kind of got left behind, and now they can't catch up. I suggest they go to 3 divisions, Jeep, Ram, and Fiat.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Fresher is not nessesarly better unless your talking about food and beer.

        Sit tight and see what happens at the Pentastar.
      • 4 Years Ago
      If all future cars have the same attention to details and design aesthetics as the new Jeep GC then I'll be more optimistic.
      • 4 Years Ago
      How to make a Chrysler

      1. - Get rusty old Chryslers from Scrap heap. 2009 and older.
      2. - Remove all steel components
      3. - Place parts in newly shaped forming press
      4. - Paint shiny
      5. - Go to dump and get used plastic garbage bags.
      6. - Shread & pellatize
      7. - Injection mold into wooden molds for interior use
      8. - Assemble parts
      9. - Whalla!
      10. - Tell everyone you just got a great deal on a new car!
        • 4 Years Ago
        It's Voila!, not Whalla!

        http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/voila

        Main Entry: voi·là
        Variant(s): or voi·la vwä-ˈlä
        Function: interjection
        Etymology: French, literally, see there
        Date: 1739
        —used to call attention, to express satisfaction or approval, or to suggest an appearance as if by magic
      • 4 Years Ago
      Sergio's entire statement was that

      "CHRYSLER WILL BREAK EVEN more records for plummeting sales and losses before it runs out of money and Fiat can take over what's left for nothing."
      • 4 Years Ago
      A steak dinner and my left nut says Chrysler won't come anywhere close to break even this year. No competitive product, poor leadership stateside, poor marketing, poor reputation, poor resale value.

      Seriously, unless Chrysler drops their pants on price, there is no value proposition for Chrysler products, unless your name is Thrifty or National and you can buy a new car for $12k.

      I see a few new ones on the road and I just wonder how many other cars those folks drove before putting their hard earned money on a POS with little resale value.
      • 4 Years Ago
      "...when asked if there was a chance Team Pentastar could pull of an actual 2010 profit, he reportedly answered "who knows?"

      Well there's confidence for you!

      "Marchionne also told reporters that Chrysler had $5 billion in cash at the end of 2009..."

      Thank you Uncle Sam!

      "... that 50 percent of all Chrysler Group vehicles will be riding on Fiat platforms by 2014."

      Shows you what they think of Chrysler's current lineup!

      "The Fiat/Chrysler CEO also reiterated his stance that Chrysler would sell 1.1 million vehicles this year..."

      Yeah, right!
      • 4 Years Ago
      You know what, Sergio is being TOO optimistic. I couldn't be happy for Chrysler if I tried.

      "The plan is based on a forecast that Chrysler’s U.S. sales will rise 18% this year, from 931,402 cars and light trucks in 2009 to 1.1 million in 2010. But in the year’s first two months, sales fell 3.2%, and analysts expect another decline when March sales are reported Thursday.

      Chrysler sales this year through February fell to 141,592 vehicles, the lowest for the company in 30 years, according to Ward’s Automotive Group.

      To hit its target, Chrysler must now sell at least 95,000 vehicles per month for the rest of the year. It has reached that level only once in the last 14 months."

      http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/the-wsj-buries-the-lede-chrysler-300-un-delayed-retail-sales-goals-in-jeopardy/#more-350636

      Yes I know it's TTAC where Farago crossed the line with GM bashing... but at least the site has statistics that clearly prove that I shouldn't keep my hopes up.

      "If sales for March fall below 95k units (which will be released later this week), Chrysler will officially be falling even further behind its sales targets. Without a serious short-term turnaround, there will be no break-even this year, and Chrysler’s entire five-year turnaround plan could be called into question."

      http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/marchionne-chrysler-will-break-even-this-year-really/#more-350811

      So when is Chrysler going to create a revolution with its Fiat platforms? 2014, which would be four years late. And is a questionable rehash of Sebring/Avenger (not that I'm saying it's going to fail) and a redesigned Jeep Grand Cherokee and 300/Charger (neither SUVs nor full-size cars are "hot" right now) capable of causing a "serious short-term turnaround"?

      It's not like Chrysler has something similar to 1986 Ford Taurus for this year's portfolio. I don't want them to fail, but there's nothing that could keep my optimism up...
      • 4 Years Ago
      The only reason this could happen is because they are so severely understaffed and they have virtually no new products or technology in development. They aren't spending a penny on anything. Test plans have been reduced, development time slashed, and engineers are doing the work of 2-3 people. Some of them are working 80 hours a week, and others are just letting the lower priority stuff slip off the table. Chrysler isn't a fully capable automaker. They have relied too heavily on their suppliers and owners for the past 13 years. When Cerberus came in with nothing really to offer, they were caught dead in the water.

      Technically, Fiat has what they need, but they are so far down a hole, it's going to be tough. Even if they somehow break even this year, it won't be because their sales have improved.

      Or, Fiat could be doing the reverse of what Daimler did . . . they shifted all the profit back to Germany and the losses to the US in order to make themselves look better and to justify getting rid of Chrysler. Fiat could be moving profit/losses around in similar ways to make Chrysler look good in order to justify the Government help and regain US consumer confidence.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Quote: ""They aren't spending a penny on anything. Test plans have been reduced, development time slashed, and engineers are doing the work of 2-3 people. Some of them are working 80 hours a week, and others are just letting the lower priority stuff slip off the table. Chrysler isn't a fully capable automaker. They have relied too heavily on their suppliers and owners for the past 13 years. When Cerberus came in with nothing really to offer, they were caught dead in the water.""




        B.S. on each and every count.

        Chrysler has billions in development money at the moment (true it's bailout money), along with much reduced costs from VEBA and other UAW givebacks.

        Chrysler is spending it wisely on new product development, and is bringing new engines and product to market with more than the usual industry standard for testing due to the extra time available during the bankruptcy.

        The new Pentastar V6 is a good example. It had nearly 1 full year of additional testing.

        Neidemeyer at TTAC is gets payola under the table to continually lie about Chrysler (and GM).

        What's your excuse?
      • 4 Years Ago
      The cars aren't that big. As a matter of fact, they fit into the european 3 metre standard. They look large because of the square shouldered styling, upright grilles and rear end. My Magnum fits into spaces designated for small cars only. They ARE well designed in the interior for space efficiency and utility. Most of the people who comment on this site have little or no actual knowledge of the vehicles they love to crap on. @willie, you have it right, bud, Chrysler makes some excellent vehicles and they will continue to do so... much to the annoyance of the hater's on this site.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Quote: ""Most of the people who comment on this site have little or no actual knowledge of the vehicles they love to crap on""

        +1

        Most aren't old enough to drive.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Current chrysler vehicles only saving grace is that they tend to be larger inside than the equivalent vehicle of other manufacturers. I have a 300 and it easily beats any BMW, Ford, Honda, Nissan and many others in interior space for the tallest of men.

      Unfortuantely, they don't have any products worth waiting for in the pipeline. They need hit vehicles to keep up with Ford and toyota. Otherwise they are dead.
        • 4 Years Ago
        That's one thing Chrysler gets right, the Charger is the roomiest car I've ever driven. I would have bought one just for that if it weren't for the sitting in a bathtub beltline.

        I don't understand why making a car roomy in the right places is so difficult. Every generation is longer and wider but none if it makes it to the driver's seat. Would two more inches of seat travel really be that hard to provide?
        • 4 Years Ago
        "MachinaDC5 5:12PM (3/30/2010)
        Those other companies don't really build vehicles that big in the first place... which may be a reason why those companies are profitable and Chrysler hasn't been."

        Um, yes they do. Believe it or not a Chrysler 300 is just slightly larger than a Honda Accord. And in fact it's SMALLER than the new Buick LaCrosse, BMW 7 Series and the new Ford Taurus. Look it up, it's all right here on the internet. And to boot, the 300 in many cases has a larger backseat, trunk and gas tank size than a similarly sized FWD car (see Honda Accord or Buick LaCrosse for this occurance) which speaks to the packaging efficiency of it and those cars were designed years after the 300. Again, look it up.

        And by the way, quite happy w/the performance & reliability of my 300, thank you.

        • 4 Years Ago
        @Redline


        Well I'm sorry for not fitting into the "most people" category of car buyers and for the most part Chryslers are not as bad as some make them out to be.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I know what you mean, even though Chrysler's may not rank as high as other vehicles I still enjoy how much space they have (I'm 6'5' mostly legs). That is my number one selling point for a car, does it have enough space for me. I have sat in both the Fusion and Malibu and neither one of them had as much space as the Sebring does and therefore I would take a Sebring anyday over the other two which are great cars (Sebring too*).

        I'm very happy to see Chrysler making a comeback!
        • 4 Years Ago
        To most people reliability and quality matters more than an extra inch or two of space. It's no use if its big and not working.
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