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Dodge's Chinese subcompact to cost ~$10k

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Chery's U.S. car likely to cost $10,000
Analysts call initial quote of $7,000 too low
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Link to Original Article @ Detroit Free Press


Chrysler is unlikely to roll out a $7,000 car when it brings the first Chery-made American-brand small car to the U.S. market in 2009, U.S. industry analysts said Thursday.

Rather than hit the streets with an extremely cheap set of wheels, Chrysler and Chery will more likely beef up the Chery A1 to about $10,000 with features and content expected by American consumers.

Shortly after the Chinese government gave the OK to a deal between the two automakers, Chrysler CEO Tom LaSorda said his company would begin selling cars made by Chery Automobile Co. in South and Central America in 2008 and in North America by 2009.

Chery's president, however, indicated that a version of his company's new A1 car will be sold in the United States at a price of $7,000 -- half the price of the cheapest Chrysler vehicle on the market today -- and that it would be on the road by next year, according to reports by Bloomberg News.

Chrysler has not confirmed this and the statements appear to be at odds with what LaSorda said at the official event Wednesday.

The A1 goes for the equivalent of $7,100 to $7,900 in China, but no official export price has been set yet by Chrysler.

The automakers' messages are unified, however, on the most important matter of the week: Chrysler and Chery are raring to go with a partnership that will likely bring the first Chinese cars to U.S. dealerships.

"This is a significant deal," said George Magliano, Global Insight's director of automotive research for the Americas. "I don't think Chrysler can wait around on this thing. Everyone is scrambling to get these programs out there."

Magliano estimates the Chrysler-Chery vehicle will sell for around $10,000 in the U.S. market. "I don't think seven is going to work," he said. "First of all, what's going to sell is not a bare-bones vehicle. They can do what they want when they sell this thing in developing countries. ... In the U.S. this thing has got to be styled right, it's got to perform right, it's got to have quality, it's got to have safety. And you don't get that for $7,000."

Erich Merkle, director of forecasting for IRN Inc., agreed.

"If I were Chrysler I don't think I would sell it that cheap. I think you could sell it for more ... and make a profit off of it," he said. "Why create a price war if you don't have to?"

Merkle estimated the Chrysler-Chery vehicle will have lots of features, such as glowing cupholders, a powerful stereo and other features "younger people expect" and suggested it should sell for as much as $15,000.

"This vehicle probably will be targeted and marketed at the younger generation," he said.

Competition in the U.S. small car market has been heating up as gasoline prices have skyrocketed.

Ford has said it is working to develop a good small car by 2010 for the U.S. market, which already has entries from Chevrolet, Toyota, Honda and Nissan.

Chrysler wants into the game, too, but officials have said it cannot produce a small car competitively in North America.

Part of Chrysler's restructuring plan is to expand its global alliances so the company can bring vehicles to market quicker and cheaper.

Last winter, Chery and Chrysler announced that they had agreed in principle to a deal that would allow Chrysler to sell Chery-made vehicles around the world under a Chrysler nameplate, expected to be Dodge.

Chrysler parent company DaimlerChrysler AG approved the deal in February. DaimlerChrysler's decision to sell Chrysler threw the Chrysler-Chery partnership into question as the German parent company looked at potential buyers.

In May it was announced that private equity firm Cerberus Capital Management would invest $7.4 billion to acquire 80.1% of Chrysler. The deal could be wrapped up as soon as this month.

At a ceremony Wednesday in Beijing, the Chinese government gave its approval to the deal, clearing the way for Chery and Chrysler to craft other contracts over which specific vehicles will be part of the partnership.
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So are these things going to perform as poorly in crash tests as other Chinese cars?

Merkle estimated the Chrysler-Chery vehicle will have lots of features, such as glowing cupholders

Headline: Chrysler, first automaker to offer glowing cupholders in entire lineup!

Unfortunately, market analysts predict that glowing cupholders will not save struggling automaker, and that they should focus on making better cars.

In other news: Al Gore's son gets pulled over for driving a Prius 100mph.

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No, son, that piece on the dash didn't "fall off". Look at the cupholder!!! It's glowing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1111111eleven zomg

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God, Chrysler...is it really that much of a chore to build your OWN compacts?

I don't buy "made in China" if I can help it, so if I feel the pressing need to get a compact, it sure as hell won't be this one.

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First they scared the hell out of us with bird flu

Then it was killing the dog with Chinese dog food

Don't use the toothpaste

Thomas the Train (via China) could harm your kids

Now they will kill Chrysler too

on the other hand they do have this.

really neat train

I wonder if it is a French import or something.

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That looks a lot like the Chevy Matiz...

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God, Chrysler...is it really that much of a chore to build your OWN compacts?

I don't buy "made in China" if I can help it, so if I feel the pressing need to get a compact, it sure as hell won't be this one.

This is a subcompact..Chrysler already builds a compact--the Calibre. The reason they are outsourcing it that probably there is no way that Chrysler could profitably engineer, design and build a $10k car themselves, let alone build it the US...just like Wal-Mart, import the cheap crap from China.

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No American manufacturer builds a subcompact in America. It doesn't make sense unless their main market would be Asia, Europe, and South America.......and then why would you build it in the US?? And then forget Asia.....Japan won't buy an American car. The Japanese automakers sell subcompacts in the US, but they just import them from Japan....where a ton of people drive them.

The only reason an American would buy a subcompact is if they lived in New York or Chicago, or gas was expensive.....and gas has been fairly cheap until recently. I like how people think the Japanese are so smart for having a subcompact ready to sell in the US just as gas prices skyrocket....but the fact is that they always had those subcompacts waiting in Japan, and they are now just releasing their large gas guzzling trucks and SUV's in the US.

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This is a subcompact..Chrysler already builds a compact--the Calibre. The reason they are outsourcing it that probably there is no way that Chrysler could profitably engineer, design and build a $10k car themselves, let alone build it the US...just like Wal-Mart, import the cheap crap from China.

Subcompact...my bad.

But you're probably right, it'd be much easier to import the cheap crap from China...but, even though I know cars have come a long way since this, if Henry Ford could succeed in slashing the cost of the Model T time and time again (I know, old reference), Chrysler could build its own stuff profitably if it tried hard enough.

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First they scared the hell out of us with bird flu

Then it was killing the dog with Chinese dog food

Don't use the toothpaste

Thomas the Train (via China) could harm your kids

Now they will kill Chrysler too

on the other hand they do have this.

really neat train

I wonder if it is a French import or something.

Amazingly, the train is a Chinese creation. A friend of mine went to China recently and rode it. Said it was pretty interesting.

Edited by Clownzilla
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Subcompact...my bad.

But you're probably right, it'd be much easier to import the cheap crap from China...but, even though I know cars have come a long way since this, if Henry Ford could succeed in slashing the cost of the Model T time and time again (I know, old reference), Chrysler could build its own stuff profitably if it tried hard enough.

Chrysler does build their own stuff profitably.. minivans, Rams, etc. The margins on cheap tiny cars are so small that they likely can't do it profitably (a 10k car costs as much to develop as a 30k car).

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Chrysler does build their own stuff profitably.. minivans, Rams, etc. The margins on cheap tiny cars are so small that they likely can't do it profitably (a 10k car costs as much to develop as a 30k car).

I was referring more to the subcompacts.

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i think this is the exact reason Plymouth should still be around. dodge is the muscle car/mid grade before you jump to chrysler and chrysler of course should be more like buick or caddy. i always thought there was a place for plymouth to be something like a chevy competitor or even a kia/hyundai competitor. although it would be highly unlikely for Cerberus to resurect the name plate, i think that a tiny car like this in dodge's portfolio would prove to be somewhat of a tarnish on the name as was, or in some cases, the pt was to chysler (since everything else in the line was more high end and you had the cheapest car in the chrysler corp under the chrysler label-not wise in my mind)

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Now that I look at the picture, I remember seeing these Chery A1s in China. They look like they're about the width of a Smart Fortwo. They have engine size badges on the back, either "1.1" or "0.8". :rolleyes: It actually said it that way on the badge in silver letters too - "0.8".

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Now that I look at the picture, I remember seeing these Chery A1s in China. They look like they're about the width of a Smart Fortwo. They have engine size badges on the back, either "1.1" or "0.8". :rolleyes: It actually said it that way on the badge in silver letters too - "0.8".

yes, but is it a hemi?

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yes, but is it a hemi?

Chery Revenger SR-Tee with Hemmy-Super-Power!!

Grapple Living by Tusks!

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Chery Revenger SR-Tee with Hemmy-Super-Power!!

Grapple Living by Tusks!

August 4th.... you owe me another Dr. Pepper.

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I guess this means that the Hornet concept will not become a reality. I was hoping that Chrysler's deal with Chery would give Chrysler the means to profitably bring the Dodge Hornet to market. I believe that would have been a vehicle that would be able to grab the attention of the youth market and provide continuity with the Dodge lineup. The Chery A1 is not the car that will help Dodge attract buyers of the Honda Fit, Nissan Versa, Chevrolet Aveo, Hyundai Accent, Kia Rio, or the Scion lineup. The Chery A1 reminds me of Yugos and Hyundai Excels from the late 80's. Chrysler should have just signed a distribution deal with Chery to sell the A1 as a Chery through its Dodge dealerships and developed the Hornet (with Chery's assistance) to sell at a later date as a Dodge product. If this action is any indication of the direction the company is going under Cerberus, then I don't have any more faith in their future with Cerberus than I had when Daimler was calling the shots for the company.

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i think this is the exact reason Plymouth should still be around. dodge is the muscle car/mid grade before you jump to chrysler and chrysler of course should be more like buick or caddy. i always thought there was a place for plymouth to be something like a chevy competitor or even a kia/hyundai competitor. although it would be highly unlikely for Cerberus to resurect the name plate, i think that a tiny car like this in dodge's portfolio would prove to be somewhat of a tarnish on the name as was, or in some cases, the pt was to chysler (since everything else in the line was more high end and you had the cheapest car in the chrysler corp under the chrysler label-not wise in my mind)

$9,995

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$70,175

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Edited by BrewSwillis
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The Aveo/Corvette disparity is completely different. Dodge has a similar situation with this potentially $10k car vs a $100k+ Viper. Lanky9172's totally valid point, however, is that Dodge and Chrysler lack differentiation. Who is the value leader and who is the premium maker? Chrysler sells the PT and sold the Voyager for several years. A base 300 is less-equipped than a base Charger. Styling alone differentiates the Avenger from the Sebring sedan. A problem exists.

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The Aveo/Corvette disparity is completely different. Dodge has a similar situation with this potentially $10k car vs a $100k+ Viper. Lanky9172's totally valid point, however, is that Dodge and Chrysler lack differentiation. Who is the value leader and who is the premium maker? Chrysler sells the PT and sold the Voyager for several years. A base 300 is less-equipped than a base Charger. Styling alone differentiates the Avenger from the Sebring sedan, that and the Avenger has better suspension tuning.. A problem exists.

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A base 300 is less-equipped than a base Charger.

You'll be happy to know that there is a Charger SE for 2007 that comes equipped with a 2.7L V6 and 4 speed auto for $21K. The base 300 is now $24K.

The "base Charger is better equipped than the base 300" statement no longer works.

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Okay. Why is the base 300 so poorly-equipped then for a 'premium' car?

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Okay. Why is the base 300 so poorly-equipped then for a 'premium' car?

Because Enterprise doesn't want to pay for tortise shell and nav.
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Okay. Why is the base 300 so poorly-equipped then for a 'premium' car?

Who said it was a premium car? It's Chrysler's large sedan that can be purchased for $24K, or can be loaded out as a C model for $35K. Prices and features are pretty similar to the Buick Lucerne, but you can get into a base 300 for $2,000 cheaper.....and the Lucerne can't be had with RWD or 345 HP, let alone 425 HP.

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