FCA Hands Out Band-Aids, Tourniquetes to Fiat Dealers

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
fca hands out band aids tourniquetes to fiat dealers

Fiat’s American retailers are struggling to bring in buyers as well as pay the cost of their dealerships, but help is on the way from the parents.

On March 9, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles pitched a plan to stabilize dealers, offering Fiat stores the opportunity to combine their operations with the Chrysler-Jeep-Dodge-Ram dealers many are adjacent to, Automotive News reports.

In addition to that money-saving move, FCA will financially prop up stand-alone Fiat dealerships that decide to continue their independent operations, as well as streamline trim offerings on the model lineup.

The brand welfare is designed to halt slipping sales until FCA can get more new products into Fiat showrooms. Fiat sales slipped 9 percent year-over-year in February, with year-to-date sales down 14.6 percent.

Less than half of the 206 Fiat dealerships in the U.S. are profitable, according to FCA, and two-thirds see fewer than 10 sales per month.

The vast majority of Fiat dealerships are joined with their FCA siblings, so consolidating those operations would be an easy move, and would save the Fiat retailer in upwards of $100,000 every year in third-party vendor expenses. The move wouldn’t mean the two sides would necessarily have to share showrooms, but that’s an option being left open to the retailers.

These Fiat dealers will also be able to advertise their products alongside Chrysler, Dodge and Ram products.

The remaining 42 independent Fiat dealers will receive monthly rent assistance payments from FCA should they choose to go it alone. Sales goals and incentives would be applied to both types of operation.

Besides the slow sales for Fiat’s 500, 500L and 500X vehicles, FCA’s Alfa Romeo brand — which plans to share space in Fiat showrooms — is www.goodcarbadcar.net]

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  • Zelgadis Zelgadis on Mar 10, 2016

    Not surprised they aren't doing well. I had the displeasure of renting one of these little abominations when my Saab was getting a replacement throttle module. It's pretty, but within beats the heart of an 80s economy car.

  • Tekdemon Tekdemon on Mar 12, 2016

    Well I thought the 500X looked fairly attractive in terms of styling both inside and out so I went and read up a bit on it. How FCA somehow managed to make a 180HP motor and a 9-speed transmission in only a 3000 pound car equal a 0-60 time of 10 seconds is beyond me. You'd think this meant that they geared it for crazy good fuel economy or something but at 24-25mpg combined that's not the case either.

  • Probert The only extra port I see happening is a V2G outlet. I don't think the Tesla port supports this. To have both CCS and Tesla would involve masses of cabling and expense that would be absurd in a game of nickels and dimes.
  • FreedMike "So why Rampage and not Dakota?"I'd say it's because "Dakota" just doesn't provide the same measure of penile-sufficiency reassurance that "Rampage" does. In any case, like the Grand Wagoneer, I'm shocked they didn't do a midsized truck years ago.
  • VoGhost Mercedes wins!!!! Now lets compare sales.
  • VoGhost Kneel and kiss the ring.
  • Chris P Bacon Vinfast made a splash with their release here? I guess a thud can create a splash...