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Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV (FCAU)

  • Mar. 26, 2014, 11:19 AM
    • Automobile dealerships no longer provide value for consumers, concludes a research paper by INSEAD professor Karan Girotra.
    • "Car dealers and more generally intermediaries represent an extra layer of companies in the supply chain that clearly increases costs to customers," writes the prof.
    • The industry has evolved such that a consumer could search and research a car online, test-drive at a product gallery, and service a purchased vehicle at a reputable repair shop without needing the backstop of a manufacturer-certified dealership, concludes Girotra.
  • Mar. 24, 2014, 7:30 AM
    • An early read on automobile sales from J.D. Power and Associates indicates sales for March are tracking at an annual selling rate of 15.6M.
    • The mark is slightly below the research firm's forecast of 15.8M.
    • Analysts sees March as a make-or-break month for the industry if it hopes to reach full-year expectations after weather stalled traffic during the January and February.
    • Prices will also be closely watched in March with inventory levels running high. Kelley Blue Book notes the average transaction price in March is up 1.6% Y/Y to $32,100 so far.
  • Mar. 18, 2014, 7:42 AM
    • Automobile sales in Europe rose 7.6% in February, according to the European Automobile Manufacturers' Association.
    • France was the only major market to show a decline in sales during the month.
    • Though sales momentum was strong across brands, analysts warn that the level of discounting was high enough to cut into profits in the sector.
    • Sales growth by automaker: Volkswagen (VLKAY) +8%, Peugeot (PEUGY) +3.6%, Fiat (FIATY) +5.6%, General Motors (GM) +12.6%, Renault (RNSDF) +11.7%, Daimler (DDAIF) +3.9%, Toyota (TM) +6.2%.
  • Mar. 17, 2014, 10:04 AM
    • Chrysler (FIATY) thinks the Jeep Renegade could be the cornerstone to building out the Jeep brand globally.
    • Though demand for SUV "superminis" is light in some regions, in regions such as China, India, and part of Europe the segment is hotly-contested.
    • The clever design of the Renegade also gives it chance in the U.S., according to some auto industry analysts.
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  • Mar. 13, 2014, 11:06 AM
    • Chrysler (FIATY) recalls 49.4K Dodge Charger vehicles because of an issue with headlight parts possibly overheating.
    • Most of the recalled cars are in the U.S.
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  • Mar. 10, 2014, 9:06 AM
    • Chrysler (FIATY) recalls over 25K Jeep and Dodge SUVs due to a braking issue.
    • The automaker says a software update will help improve brake fluid flow during aggressive braking operations.
    • The recall covers some 2012-2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee and Dodge Durango SUVs.
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  • Mar. 6, 2014, 8:03 AM
    • Chrysler (FIATY) thinks the new Jeep Renegade will sell well in the U.S. even though the vehicles will be manufactured in Italy.
    • The automaker debuted the model at the Geneva Motor Show this week.
    • The model will go on sale in Europe by the end of this year end and in the U.S. in early 2015.
  • Mar. 4, 2014, 1:53 PM
    • The overall tone at the Geneva Motor Show is positive as sales patterns in Europe have stabilized and even shown some pockets of strength. Perhaps the biggest question is if the sales gains are organic or the results of heavy discounting? Autohaus PulsSchlag reports price cuts of at least 10% at most major manufacturers.
    • European automakers are downplaying the impact on sales in Russia from the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. Russia is Europe's second largest automobile market and is expected to pass Germany within a few years.
    • Jeep unveiled its all-new 2015 Renegade compact crossover SUV. The model is unique in that it will feature seven different engine choices tailored to different global markets.
    • BMW announced plans to build over ten new smaller models on its latest platform. The Mini Clubman concept has created a stir with analysts.
    • New models from Ferrari, Lamborghini, and Maserati show that the ultra-wealthy haven't been forgotten by automakers at the show.
  • Mar. 4, 2014, 1:13 PM
    • Chrysler (FIATY) is close to making an announcement on future minivan production, according to CEO Sergio Marchionne.
    • The automaker is deciding on if it will build future models of the Chrysler Town and Country and Dodge Caravan at its plant in Ontario or elsewhere.
    • Previously, execs with Chrysler have complained about the business atmosphere in Canada.
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  • Mar. 4, 2014, 8:16 AM
    • Fiat (FIATY) CEO Sergio Marchionne outlined how the company might pay for the acquisition of Chrysler shares during a wide-ranging press conference at the Geneva Motor Show.
    • The exec doesn't want to see Fiat sell assets to raise funds, but points to a possible convertible bond or capital raise. He also noted that by scrapping its dividend some extra funds are piling up for the automaker.
    • A full plan from Fiat on Chrysler funding will be disclosed to shareholders in May.
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  • Mar. 3, 2014, 8:44 AM
    • Chrysler (FIATY) saw truck sales rise 27% to 109,913 in February to help offset a 15% decline in car sales.
    • Sales for the Ram brand were up 28% during the month while Chrysler managed a 1% rise.
    • Jeep strength: The Wrangler, Grand Cherokee, and Cherokee models all saw sales of over 10K in February.
    • The automaker finished the month with 85 days supply of inventory, compared to 105 days at the end of last month.
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  • Mar. 3, 2014, 8:38 AM
    • Chrysler's (FIATY) unit sales +11.0% to 139K to beat the consensus estimate calling for a 8.8% improvement.
    • The automaker's Jeep brand looked good to consumers mired in cold weather patterns with sales up 47% Y/Y.
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  • Feb. 27, 2014, 3:59 PM
    • New U.S. auto sales are expected to rise just 0.8% Y/Y in February, according to, which expects to be hampered by poor winter weather for the second month in a row.
    • Edumnds estimates 1.2M new cars and trucks will be sold in the U.S. in February, up from slightly less than 1.2M a year ago and improving from January's total.
    • Among major auto makers, roughly 5% sales declines are projected for GM and Ford (F), with more modest sales drops seen at Toyota (TM) and Honda (HMC); Fiat Chrysler (FIATY) and Nissan (NSANY) are likely report double-digit sales increases, and Hyundai (HYMLF) sales are expected to rise 2%.
  • Feb. 26, 2014, 9:29 AM
    • A plan by Fiat (FIATY) to build Jeep vehicles in Russia is in shambles with a local production facility undergoing bankruptcy proceedings.
    • Fiat is expected to search for an alternative.
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  • Feb. 21, 2014, 9:50 AM
    • Automobile sales made an impressive jump in the second week of February, according to data compiled by J.D. Power.
    • Winter storms had auto sales for the month tracking 5% lower than a year ago, but a strong bounce has now cut the falloff to closer to 1%. A monthly forecast for 15.7M vehicles delivered is back on track with more late-month momentum expected.
    • Perhaps of equal importance, pricing has held up with the average transaction price of $29.9K looking good for a challenging month to get potential buyers onto dealer lots.
    • What to watch: Analysts know February alone won't solve the inventory issue of the Big Three (GM, F, FIATY), but an improving trend needs to be confirmed to alleviate concerns. The month will also give a good read on several head-to-head model battles between Toyota (TM) and Honda (HMC).
  • Feb. 19, 2014, 1:35 PM
    • Chrysler (FIATY) announces that orders for the new 2014 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel exceeded 8K in only four days to fill up the automaker's initial allotment of the hyped powertrain.
    • The EPA has certified a gas mileage rating of 28 mpg for the model, a mark which is the best in the segment.
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