For a discussion centered on foreign policy, President Obama and Gov. Mitt Romney spent a lot of time discussing the condition of the U.S. auto industry during Monday night's presidential debate.
We haven't heard much from Bob Nardelli since he and his Cerberus buddies rode off into the sunset last year in the wake of the Chrysler bankruptcy. Having proved pretty conclusively that he and his team were incapable of running a large automotive enterprise, Nardelli has apparently managed to climb back on the horse to try again at a slightly smaller enterprise, albeit in a different industry.
According to The Wall Street Journal Jim Press, the Chrysler Group LLC Deputy Chief Executive and sole surviving member of pre-bailout/bankruptcy Chrysler will be resigning his post by the end of November. The WSJ quotes three anonymous people close to the plan. When reached for comment, Press only stated, "I don't think anything has been released about management changes." If true, Press's departure will leave Fiat/Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne without any former-Chr
The recent string of government bailouts has placed a 50,000-watt spotlight on executive pay. Executives from Detroit automakers have already cut their pay to show the public and their own workforces that they're sacrificing for the greater good. There hasn't been much focus, however, on finance arm executives, though there likely will be after Automotive News learned that GMAC CEO Alvaro de Molina was paid $11.6 million in 2008. Molina's 2008 windfall comes one year after he pulled in
If you have a Dodge Ram in the driveway and someone claiming to be Jim Press calls you asking if you're satisfied with your truck, it just might be him. Chrysler recognizes that it has a customer service problem, and the Pentastar is going to extraordinary lengths to correct it. Its top 300 executives and directors are participating in a program called "Customer First" that puts a priority on -- you guessed it -- the customer. The executives, even guys named Nardelli, Press, and LaSorda, are res
Daimler may have divested 80.1% of its ownership in Chrysler, but the German automaker is still feeling pain from the Pentastar. The value of Daimler's portion of Chrysler has dropped from $2.18 billion to $852 million not even a year after the two parted ways. The loss of nearly $1.4 billion in value is a fair chunk of change, even for the mighty Daimler, but the news is not all bad for company shareholders. If Daimler hadn't Chris Shunk
Car sales in the U.S. flat-out suck right now, and both domestic and Japanese automakers are feeling the pinch. Chrysler posted a 13.2% decline in its Daily Sales Rate last month while offering 0% financing, so the Auburn Hills-based automaker has little choice but to continue offering free loans in an effort to stop the bleeding. Current deals include five years at 0% for 2008 models and six years for leftover 2007 mod
The recent decision by Chrysler to give employees a mandatory, unpaid two week vacation has workers peeved, and it's tough to blame them. Many long-time workers have already planned and paid for vacations that land outside of July 7-21, so those employees will have to cancel their plans or risk going unpaid for two weeks. It's very public news that Chrysl
A key part of Chrysler LLC's agreement last year with the UAW gave the automaker the ability to hire new employees at a fraction of wages and health care of current workers. Since the deal was signed, Chrysler has been trying to show high-cost workers the door. The privately-owned automaker had a goal of 10,000 overall buyouts to cut labor costs, but it doesn't look like the Pentastar is going to get its wish.
Chrysler has been on the look-out lately for dancing partners for anything from vehicle platforms to alternative propulsion, and the Pentastar has extended its outsourcing to IT services. Chrysler and Tata Consultancy have teamed up on a $120 million, multi-year contract that sources Chrysler's d
Chrysler and Ford have been at the top of the headlines all year long for various reasons, with Ford continuing to slim down by selling off its PAG brands, while Chrysler got dumped by Daimler and went private at the hands of Cerberus Capital Management. 2008 looks to be an equally interesting year in the auto industry, and a recent article in Fortune by senior editor Alex Taylor III suggests that a merg
Gas prices are skyrocketing, car sales are down, and construction has been hurt by a slowing economy. For the auto industry, that means pickup truck sales are sagging. The Dodge Ram has been feeling the pinch, with sales down 2% vs. 2006 and sky-high incentives to keep numbers even that close. In years past, Chrysler management would have rammed more Rams down their dealers' throats, but the Cerberus regime is opting to idle
If you've ever wanted your very own British Automaker, boy has Ford got a deal for you: buy one, get one free. The two brands are said to be worth $1.5 Billion or more, and Ford can use all the cash it can get. There are only a few more weeks to get in a bid on Jaguar and Land Rover, and according to Auto News, Cerberus is still in the running. Indian automaker Tata Motors is in t
A UAW leadership-approved contract between GM and the UAW is only a couple days from a rank and file vote deadline, so the UAW has begun negotiations with its next target, Chrysler LLC. The Cerberus-owned automaker is looking for a similar deal to what GM received, plus the same wage/benefit breaks GM and Ford received the past couple years. Chrysler feels it was Chris Shunk
Cerberus has opened up the corporate wallet, and Chrysler is spending the cash to infuse their lineup with alternative powertrains. New Chrysler product boss Jim Press told the Detroit News that diesels, hybrids, plug-in hybrids, and diesel-hybrids are among the technologies "in the mix," and that every vehicle will eventually have an alternative to the gasoline combustion engine. Full electric and hybrid-only models are also on the table, as Chrysler looks to shift away from the heavy,
Chrysler has been through a lot in the past 18 months, including an ad campaign that touted the company's German engineering prowess, three CEOs, and two ownership groups. Now that the company is private, Chrysler would like to reinvent itself as an American automaker. While the Pentistar has canceled the hideous and un-American looking Imperial (actually, we don't know what planet the Imperial came fro
Chrysler is apparently a little worried that there might be a mass exodus of executives during the transition from DaimlerChrysler "partnership of equals" to Cerberus stewardship. Because of that, they have taken the bold step of advising current employees against applying for jobs at Daimler AG or Chrysler Financial.