“If you’re a serious carmaker and you can’t make it in this segment, you’re doomed.”
— Sergio Marchionne, September 2012
“There’s nothing wrong with the car.”
— Sergio Marchionne, January 2013
“We have decided to de-focus, from the manufacturing standpoint, to de-focus on the passenger car market.”
— Sergio Marchionne, January 2016
The launch was flubbed by an emphasis on manual transmissions. The brand lacked the reputation of a competitive builder of small cars after 15 years of Neons and Calibers. Trim and engine variants were, sometimes, poorly aligned. The market for passenger cars began to shrink even as the overall auto industry expanded. Demand for the Dart, limited even at its peak, dried up as most Dart competitors posted modest declines.
The reasons for the Dodge Dart’s demise are many. At the end of its run, however, the Dodge Dart’s production end in September 2016 represents a premature euthanization. After Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ boss said less than seven months ago that the Dart, along with the larger Chrysler 200, would be withdrawn from the marketplace “over a prolonged period of time,”
FCA has now clarified that “prolonged” equals only three-quarters of a year.
What’s the hurry? Jeep. (Read More…)