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Chrysler's "Smoke and Mirrors" marketing

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Chrysler's "Smoke and Mirrors" marketing finally catches up to them.

Detroit. As predicted here more than seven months ago, Chrysler's festering problems have finally caught up to them. The inventory problem that they've been wrestling with for going on eight months now has turned into a full-blown crisis - after they kept repeatedly insisting that things were under control and that there was only a need for minor "adjustments" before things would be in order. Right. And now, with Chrysler Group sales down 14 percent in May and 3 percent for the year over last year's figures, and with incentive spending at exceedingly high levels, things are starting to get ugly out in Auburn Hills.

delorenzo

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I fail to see how acknowledging that 'Hemi" has become a frontline part of the American Lexicon is evidence of a "We're smarter than other car companies" attitude. Where's the correlation? In fact, any claims that the 300 was a sign that Chrysler Group was 'Doing Things Right' all came from the media & the consumer, as far as I ever saw; not DCX.

>>"...Jeep Commander - which is the winner of our 2006 "Answer to the Question that Absolutely No One was Asking" award"<<

Dear God, how did the VW phaeton get snubbed????

>>"...Jeep Compass (our leading nominee for our 2007 "Answer to the Question...")"<<

Smells like an agenda....

So the bottom line seems to be that the current mess (to what degree is still unknown) is due to established Daimler figureheads, or was Duhlorenzo trying to avoid saying that directly?

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Chrysler's problems have always been the mirror opposite of GM's: Chrysler has great looking packaging but no substance. Flimsy transmissions, poor build quality have hampered them for about 20 years; however, this has been masked by their reinventing themselves every few years and bringing out some kick ass products. The original LH cars were pretty revolutionary 12 years ago; the Ram went from being an "also-ran" to a player in the same time frame. But like putting a wedding dress on a donkey, you can only do so much until the groom discovers she is still a donkey.

Even now, wrapping the entire company around an engine? Is the consumer too stupid to remember why the hemi went away in the first place? They were gas guzzlers, expensive to build, expensive to fix. Kudos to Chrysler's marketing boys for putting on a prettier dress on the donkey, but.....it's still a donkey.

I happen to like Chrysler's new, edgy styling, but the blocky, athletic look isn't for everyone and wrapping all of the companies products in the same styling is risky.

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I'd rather be Mopar than FoMoCo or GM right now.

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My SRT-4 donkey was the best bang for the buck in performance when I bought it... had great power 230 Hp... Had good milage 30 MPG on the HWY and never went back to the dealer ONCE...

I liked that donkey... it was good...

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>>"...Jeep Commander - which is the winner of our 2006 "Answer to the Question that Absolutely No One was Asking" award"<<

Dear God, how did the VW phaeton get snubbed????

seriously, i think it was the 2004 or 2005 winner...

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Mopar is developing an increasing problem of what I like to call "hollow products," like the "7/8 finished" Caliber. In that sense, DeLorenzo has a point, that Chrysler is again for the billionth time on the verge of another downslope.

As previously mentioned, Chrysler's build quality has remained stagnant while others have made leaps and bounds (Toyota and GM come to mind). Mopar interiors are becoming increasingly laughable...NG products are no better or even worse than the products they replace. Additionally, the company has a weak, more than outdated V6 lineup, and IMO a failed venture with the Hyundai/Mitsu/DCX 4-cylinder project, which have come to market as underpowered and outclassed. Current and future products have been poorly executed and feature unmissible weak spots, such as the Commander, Compass, Caliber, Aspen, V6 Durango, future Avenger and Sebring, et al.

What's sad about this, is that most of Chrysler's product woes are due to poor execution, outdated powertrains, and overbundant cost cutting. It's like the design talent, creativity, and car guys are all there...but no one's there to finish the job.

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Mayb they need someone like me there :scratchchin:

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I wouldn't call the Commander the "answer to the question absolutely no one was asking."

That distinction easily goes to the Compass and (to a lesser extent) the Patriot.

It's a shame, but Jeep really lost it's way this past year. The Commander would've made sense if it weren't for it's gimmicky styling, but the Compass is one of the worst-executed production vehicles since the Aztek. I guess Jeep has none other than Dodge and the disastrous Caliber to thank for that, but I have no sympathy for a brand that completely abandons it's roots for such worthless crap. Oh well. :)

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aside from the typically chrysler trash interior, the commander kicks ass. at first i thought the new GC was lame, but now I love it.

the wrangler and 4 door wrangler kick it.

the Liberty is quite pansy, but the chicks dig it. gotta sell some jeeps to chicks.

the compass and patriot ruin everything.

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Other than the good old Caravan, there isn't really a Chrysler product that I would consider. Most of there products look chunky, get worse mileage than competitors and all of there trucks are heavy and slow except the Hemi models which are just big and burely. The Stratus/Sebring are the only normal looking cars left with the Neon going away but are aged and I never cared for the squished window 300C/Magnum. This is another company loaded with too many SUV's and trucks and few good car choices.

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Do automakers not read or listen to reviews of their vehicles? If I had a voice in DaimlerChrysler, I would read close to every review and see what mistakes were made and fix them or at least try to. Dont get me wrong Chrysler is a good company but they have problems with consistancy and IMO they need to be a little more aggressive. It seems as if they have gotten lazy. If I were them, I'd either upgrade or discontinue all outdated powerplants. Then I'd go through the ENTIRE lineup from Chrysler to Jeep and try to lighten up the vehicles. It would be nice if the designs of the cars were actually lighter than they appear.

Being a fan of DaimlerChrysler I love their designs but some have to grow on me. I love the 300C/Magnum's design. The design of the Viper is ok. It lost much of its Viperness. Hopefully the NG will be better, like some thinner, more sinister headlamps. The new Ram had to grow on me as well as the Charger. The Durango looks like a polar bear and is odd because it shares no design cues with the Dakota or Ram except for the headlamps and the bumpers are hideous, which would unfortunately go the same for the Aspen. The Jeep GC I love but the Commander is just plain weird but mayb a redesign would change that. I think it would look better with plain square or circle headlamps and mayb tuck in some of the rear overhang. The Wrangler and Liberty are fine but the Compass is iffy. Chrysler designs are nice. Though I dont like the Aspen. It may grow on me but I dont know. The art deco lines on the hood are a nice touch even though it may seem too much. They might work better on a longer hooded car.

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LOOKING IN THE PAPer. All the Chrysler products have really discounted leases. The Commander is one of the cheapest vehicles you can drive right now. DCX needs to move iron.

By the way, I saw an unmarked Charger cop car today! now since even fleet sales are thinning for the LX cars, I suppose now they are gonna hit up cops and taxis.

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Chrysler and Co. need to focus on powertrain (specifically V6) and interiors. Save for the Compass, Commander and Aspen/Durango, they have exterior design down pretty well. Their vehicles stand out in a crowd. Unfortunately, it seems as though they focused on exterior design and left everything else behind.

The LX cars, however many of you hate them, are the most significant vehicles from an American manufacturer in decades, IMO.

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I have a Popular Mechanics magazine from 1958 that included a Chrysler review (New Yorker, I think). The reviewer said that it drove well and looked great, but he was concerned about its long-term dependabilty. I guess some things never change!

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well, as we sit, the caliber is not a disaster but a runaway hit. with, what, only a 12 day supply? the magnum is not selling well but, boy oh boy, i took one to cincy and it was a fine ride. fast and pretty smooth. i almost bought one but i really do not like the interior. specifically the door panels and some of the inside trim. none the less this is one hot car. the charger is pretty sharp as well. don't care for the commander but i think the new, midsized dodge suv will sell well. i think the crummy build quality award goes to ford or maybe mitsu.

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When I said the Caliber is a disaster, I made no reference to sales.

I was in one last week. Build quality was appalling, with ill-fitting panels and misaligned pieces both inside and out. Interior fit-and-finish was atrocious, and road-noise was more obtrusive than any modern car I've riden in. Yes, styling is subjective, but unless all you're interested in is standing out, I fail to see the Caliber's appeal.

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