Chart Of The Day: Canada Loves FCA And Small Cars, But Not The Dodge Dart
FCA Canada only sold 220 Dodge Darts in June 2015, a 79-percent year-over-year decline. Through the first six months of 2015, Dart volume is down 55 percent to only 1,979 sales, one-fifteenth the total achieved by the best-selling Honda Civic and equal to just 1.1% of the compact car market.
The Dart’s market share in the United States, meanwhile, grew from 3.4 percent in the first-half of 2014 to 4.2 percent in the first half of 2015. Though no industry observer would suggest that the Dart’s U.S. uptick relates purely to increased desirability and demand – and not to cash allowances and fleet-friendliness – the car’s Canadian dive speaks volumes about FCA’s emphasis on light trucks and SUVs north of the 49th parallel.
True, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ U.S. outpost is also heavy on “light trucks.” But while 27 percent of the automaker’s U.S. volume this year is derived from passenger cars, just 13 percent of their Canadian sales are generated by cars.
Yet FCA has reported more Canadian new vehicle sales this year than any other automaker, even with a car division that’s lacking consequence, even with buyers unable to actually find cars (only 11 of the 634 new vehicles in stock at my three local FCA dealers are Darts; one of two local Honda stores has 126 Civics), even with their lone competitor in Canada’s biggest car segment flopping.
The Dart was Canada’s 25th-best-selling car at this time a year ago, but it currently ranks 46th.
Timothy Cain is the founder of GoodCarBadCar.net, which obsesses over the free and frequent publication of U.S. and Canadian auto sales figures. Follow on Twitter @goodcarbadcar and on Facebook.
Just slap a Hemi badge on it and moron fan-boys will congregate. J/p My sister owns the 200, so far I've loved every thing about it (Pentastar included) but already it has been in for some work. An irritating clunking noise up front, Chrysler replaced 2 balljoints. The trunk latch is somehow mechanically stuck so she has zero access. Washer bottle motor would be my guess as to why nozzles wont spray. Im just waiting for the valve seats to fail, that will probably follow shortly.
FCA really can't afford to screw up the '16 model refresh. Switch up the engine/transmission offerings, add some content, and price them more aggressively. Any automaker with serious global ambitions can't afford to phone it in for this segment.
The Dart is just an upsell to a 200 or Charger, it's not a good car or a good value. Outside of the ole Avis lot, I pretty much never see them driving around. Take for example the Nissan Altima, it's priced pretty much the same. Not the best car ever, but certainly both a better car and value than a Dart. Heck, Altima probably gets better gas millage.
Well, in Canada, we know our small cars, and the Dart, all opining above to the contrary, just don't cut the mustard. If it did, they'd sell more.