Chrysler CEO to Old School Chum: I Need 100 Days to Figure This **** Out

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago

OK, I'm paraphrasing. Freshly-minted (though perhaps not minty fresh) Chrysler CEO Boot'em Bob Nardelli rang-up The Rockford Register Star's star columnist Chuck Sweeny to schmooze. The fellow Auburn High School Knights yakked about federal corporate average fuel economy figures. Well, anyway, that's the news peg. And most of Sweeny's recollection sounds a lot like a PR release. But there is some meat to this matter. "Nardelli said he’ll need about 100 days before he can make a realistic assessment of what needs to be done to make Chrysler successful as an independent company, but he said his experience at GE is exactly what he needs to guide Chrysler: 'I’ve been there, done that before.'" First, BEB's 100-day assessment flies in the face of Cerberus' modus operandi, as reported by Portfolio ("When Cerberus pulls the trigger on a new purchase, it executes a detailed 100-day plan"). Secondly, it seems our fears of Boot'em Bob Six Sigma-ing Chrysler to death are not without foundation. Meanwhile, BEB's optimism knows no bounds, and he really, really wants to be seen as a car guy. "This is a really good business, and I’ve always had this romance about cars."

Robert Farago
Robert Farago

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  • AKM AKM on Aug 24, 2007
    With rough roads like that ahead, my heart goes out to everyone at the Pentastar…esp the people who survive the honeymoon period. Looks like the honeymoon is gearing to be some serious S&M raping for the Chrysler employees...
  • Cgraham Cgraham on Aug 24, 2007

    "This is a really good business, and I’ve always had this romance about cars." I see a romance explosion on the way! VERY NICE!

  • Blunozer Blunozer on Aug 24, 2007

    @Picard234: I didn't mean the Magnum or 300 will be killed just refreshed. I think the Charger might be killed because it overlaps to much with the 300. As far as the Challenger... Am I the only one who sees it as a losing proposition? It's basically a 2 door Charger. It'll be too heavy, too expensive, and too much of a gas guzzler. Sure the Mustang might be doing well, but its got a hell of a lot more pedigree and a much bigger fanclub. The Viper is currently getting sand kicked in its face by the cheaper Z06 'Vette. I doubt the beancounters at Cerebrus will spend the money to update such a low volume car. Chrylser desperatley need to improve their eco-image as well. Dropping the Charger, Viper, and Challenger will definately help in that department.

  • MLS MLS on Aug 24, 2007

    The Viper was just updated for 2008. With 600HP now on tap, the Z06 is no longer a threat. Plus, fuel economy has improved significantly, and the resulting reducation in gas guzzler tax makes the 2008 model cheaper than the 2006 that preceded it. The Charger sells over 100K units per year, and I don't think there's a 300-overlap problem in the general marketplace. They're not going to cancel it.