Chrysler Reports 2012 Results, But No News

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Although Chrysler reported record profits from year-end 2012 auto sales Wednesday, there was little offered in the form of an updated product plan. Chrysler-Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne called 2012 an "exceptional year" for Chrysler but gave away little in the form of updated product plans for any of the company’s pickup truck, commercial or SUV brands.

The Chrysler leader made several notes in the quarterly report meeting to industry analysts about how well sales and award gathering was going for the Ram truck team, as well as how the company is succeeding globally with Jeep's continued marketshare gains. The only sour note came when discussing the European market outlook and the company’s slumping sales data there.

Automotive News is reporting the debut of the new Fiat-based (likely off the Doblo platform) Ram ProMaster City small commercial van, which will eventually compete with the Ford Transit Connect, will appear sometime next year. On a related note, rumors are swirling about a full-size Ford Transit fighter from Ram. We guess it will be shown at the 2013 Chicago Auto Show (February) or NTEA Work Truck Show (March) this year.

The smaller ProMaster will likely be based off the quirky Fiat Doblo. When asked about how aggressive he would be with competitors in the viscious and profitable truck segments, Marchionne responded, "I will never declare war on the competitors — I just want a fair share of the U.S. market, whatever that may be."

For the 2012 quarterly financial report press release, click here.

For the accompanying presentation (and it's a large file), click here.

 

Comments

It would be nice to see some of the Ram and Jeep concept trucks become a reality. I can understand that Chrysler needs to catch their breath and concentrate on profitability, but they do have some nice concepts and it would be nice to see one of their smaller concept trucks go into production. Fiat has done an exceptional job with Chrysler and deserves praise.

Good for Chrysler! Not too shabby for a Company that was left for dead.

I'd hardly consider Chrysler getting $12.1 billion from the US and Canadian taxpayers as "left for dead". They did refinance that money through private lenders to get a better interest rate though. Hopefully they will be able to pay that back too.

Kudos to Marchionne and his business acumen.
The only news in relation to Ram was a "A new model with Fiat underpinnings will arrive sometime next year with a subtle refresh of the Ram 1500 shortly afterward in 2015" - that most likely will be a Doblo based van that is aimed at the Transit Connect.
Thet did say that "Rounding out things is the introduction of two additional models for the 2016 model year."
Would that be a Ducato and Daily based vans?
Maybe the Strada?

It was interesting to read the fact that Fiat has backed off of importing a bunch of Fiat cars rebadged as Chrysler products. Americans for the most part do not like anemic, cramped little econoboxes.
They did mention a Jeep product based off of a Fiat to replace the Patriot.

@Lou--I agree rebadged Fiats might be a hard sell. It is different with the Dart in that they used a Lancia platform but made a distinctly American car. Also Chrysler had a void in their product lineup with the lack of a compact car. It seems that Chrysler has been making some good moves.

I have been recently been toying with the idea of a small car, and went to my local Dodge dealer to take out a new Dart, it was a reg type SXT model, with the standard engine, I wanted to try a standard trans, but noe were available at the time, the car was very nice, at the price point, and went and handled great! the inside was fine, and the radio you get with that package is great, I have built one on the comp. and it comes out to 18K, but that would be a Rally, wiht the 2.0 4cyl and 6speed, if you want the more powerful engine, you have to go up to 2oK+ and the realy powerful Tigershark engine is not even available yet, oh well, that is what I would want anyway.

Lou, In the presentation it never showed a Ram 1500 refresh for 2015. It only showed a Chrysler produced refresh. Some assumed this to the Ram 1500, but others say it will most likely be the Ram CV Cargo van. http://www.allpar.com/news/index.php/2013/01/preview-of-mopars-to-come

Ram 1500 just got it's refresh at the end of 2012 into 2013. I don't feel they will be up for another refresh it again 1+ year later. Don't you agree?

How is it that the Italians can turn this company around, and the Germans could not? Strange times.

@Mike - sorry, I was going off of a report from a different site that posted an update yesterday.
http://www.autosavant.com/2013/01/31/chrysler-unveils-ambitious-long-term-product-plan/

Fiat is discovering Dodge/Chrysler ain't that cash cow they had hoped for. Fiat's plans were for 3x more cash than has materialized.

There was no report on a Ram 1500 refresh for 2015. That was an assumption gleaned by a blogger.

@Paul - "Ram: While Chrysler’s truck and commercial vehicle brand will not experience as widespread of a change as it’s sister divisions that does not mean that no new models are in the pipeline. A new model with Fiat underpinnings will arrive sometime next year with a subtle refresh of the Ram 1500 shortly afterward in 2015. Rounding out things is the introduction of two additional models for the 2016 model year."
that was from Autosavant.
I have posted the link.
Page 27 of the second link of Fiat's press release has a table outlining refreshes and new product releases. 2015 indicates a refresh of their whole Ram product line.
Not much information, but it is there.

@Sandman 4x4: when they first released the Darts, they were just manuals, it was a supply issue. Alot of people said the take rate on manuals was down on vehicles in the past, well yeah, they barely produced manuals! The Mopar Dart gets shown at the Chicago show. With only the Multiair 1.4 and the 2.0L, they are selling a good deal of them, it's alot of bang for the buck, but alot of folks buy the discounted Avenger for a lower price.

When the 2.4 and 2.4 turbo come out, then they will really sell.
I am glad they offer them with manual! If I was to get one it would be 1.4 turbo auto, cause it would be for for my lady, she can't drive manual, or maybe just hasn't learned? Atleast the turbo 1.4 would have the torque to get up these hills, her current car is a 2000 Sentra 1.8 auto, cruise control holds it in a lower gear far too long, long after we crest the hill and start going down another, still turning 3500 rpm. I find myself wishing I was in the 96 Camry 5 speed, 2.2L, atleast it's cruise will make all the highway driving at 65 mph no downshift required, it could run as slow as 50 up all those hills. But then the seats aren't too comfortable.

I leave the truck for when I need it, but I'd much rather be in it over both of them!

@Marcus, the Germans raped Chrysler to shore up Mercedes.
Cebrus didn't have a clue on how to run a car company.
I really thought that Cebrus would have broken up Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep & Ram to sell them off to other companies.
Chrysler has more lives than a cat.
They also have some very good car/truck engineering people working for them.
These people have kept good products in the pipeline.
They just needed cash to build them.

Hi Lou, I was confused by this too earlier. The source from Autosavant is a blogger who "galeaned" info. Ram never said anything about refreshing the Ram 1500 in 2015. You can also tell this is not happening because nobody else is reporting it.

Page 27 of the second link of Fiat's press release has a table outlining.....2015 indicates a refresh of their whole Ram product line."

I think you're reading too much into it. 2015 just lists one "Chrysler produced refresh." As Allpar pointed out this is likely to be the cargo van.

The 2013 Ram refresh is obvious, the Promaster/Ram HD refresh we already knew about in a previous press releases. The rest are vans. 2016 may be something. In 2009 they said a Jeep van would be produced in 2011. Now they don't even mention it. As Mark Williams indicated there is little to no new info that we didn't already know.

@devo340
I think you'll find Chrysler's problems started in the 70s, prior to its merging with AMC.

Chrysler never established an effective international brand as well. And what they had overseas failed.

I think Damlier didn't have the experience to work in the US market producing cheap cars to compete with Ford/GM.

Fiat like Chrysler produced crap for many years, and I think Fiat has the management/modelling to pull Chrysler back bcause it encountered the same problems, I hope they do.

Fiat's woes in Europe aren't a management issue, or I should say a management issue with Fiat. Sergio is trying desperately hard to change Italian workplace regulations to liberalise his workforce. And I think if the UAW gives him a hard time he will offshore Chrysler production out of the US gradually.

So, the UAW has to realise they will cost jobs if they don't accept accountability for their actions.

I hope the Detroit unions wake up to themselves and realise they were a part of the demise of the Big 3.

Strange, since I saw on another site that Chrysler presented its roadmap to the next 5 years, including the likelihood of a solid-body Jeep Wrangler (all steel, no removable top) and a pickup (possibly Wrangler or J-12 based). Also mention was made of a new pickup for the RAM line--potentially mid-sized or compact--though no details were given.

@DWFields
Is the Jeep pickup manufacturered in China for the Chinese market? That's what I have read.

@Jeff S.
I think Chrysler will not mention the connection and just call them RAM Vans. Not too many people in the US would know. Bit like the Mercedes Sprinter became the Dodge Sprinter when sold by Chrysler. Quite a few were not aware it was made by Mercedes.

@Robert Ryan--I agree that the Fiat vans will be wearing Ram grills and be named Ram. What I was referring to was what Lou stated that rebadging Fiats and Lancias as Chryslers and Dodges will not go over in America, but sharing platforms and creating a new product like the Dodge Dart was a better choice. For example the newer Chevy Camaro shares the Holdern platform but it is distinctly a Camaro with the retro design of a 69 Camaro. Sure the newer Camaro is not identical to a 69, but it has just enough touches to ellicit positive responses from Camaro fans. This is true as well with the newer Dodge Challenger that shares a Mercedes platform resembles the 70 1/2 Challenger that many boomers longed for but could not afford in their youth.

@Jeff S.
Yes get away "badge engineering" and create a new body on existing architecture.

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