FCA to discontinue Chrysler 200, Dodge Dart, focus on utilities moving forward
Reports have been swirling that automaker Fiat Chrysler is taking on a strategy that would kill the Dodge Dart and Chrysler 200 altogether. The purpose of the proposed strategy is to stop making vehicles that aren’t making the brand any money. According to Automotive News, if the strategy works Fiat Chrysler will be able to clear its balance sheet by selling compact and midsize sedans built by another automaker while concentrating on high-profit Jeep utility vehicles and Ram pickups.
"There are a number of things that will be put in place in the next 18 months, things that have been agreed and detailed that will effectively withdraw the current Chrysler 200 and Dodge Dart from the marketplace over a long period of time,” says Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne
"We will be continuing discussions with potential partners that will be able to allow us to access that architecture and effectively provide us the product from their facilities that would allow us to continue to cover the market."
FCA has already spent more than $900 million to start the changeover of producing more Jeep Cherokees and Ram 1500 pickups. The Belvidere Assembly where the Dart and 200 are currently produced will now produce the Jeep Cherokee; while the Sterling Height Assembly will be revamped to produce the frame for the next generation Ram 1500. Production of the Dart and 200 ends in 2017.
There is no word yet on which automaker Fiat Chrysler will partner with to produce compact and midsize sedans at this time. Stay tuned to MotorWeek for more.