Tag Archive | "Chrysler"

KBB Announces 2017 Best Buy Awards


IRVINE, Calif. — Kelley Blue Book today announced the winners of its 2017 Kelley Blue Book Best Buy Awards. The 2017 Honda Civic was named the Overall Best Buy of 2017, however, 11 other vehicles also took top honors for their respective categories.

“Kelley Blue Book editors went to the unprecedented choice of honoring the Honda Civic as the Overall Best Buy for the second year in a row because of the Civic’s unsurpassed all-around value,” said Jack R. Nerad, executive editorial director and executive market analyst for KBB.com. “It turns in very high marks in objective measures like resale value and cost to own, yet it also is a supremely satisfying car to drive and live with every day.”

Overall, the Honda brand took home four awards, with its new Civic also winning in the small car category. The Honda Accord and Pilot also won in the mid-size car and mid-size SUV/crossover categories, respectively.

The Chevrolet brand received the second-most Best Buy awards, with its Impala winning in the full-size car category and the automaker’s Tahoe winning in the full-size SUV/crossover category.

The 2017 Audi A4 was named the Best Buy in the luxury car segment, while the 2017 Porsche 718 Boxster took top honors in the sports/performance car segment. The best electric/hybrid was the 2017 Toyota Prius Prime.

In the small SUV/ crossover category, the 2017 Kia Sportage emerged as KBB’s Best Buy. In the luxury SUV/ crossover category, the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLC was honored with the top award. And for the third year in a row, Ford’s F-150 received KBB’s Best Buy award.

Lastly, the 2017 Chrysler Pacifica received the best buy award for the minivan category.

Posted in Auto Industry NewsComments (0)

Marchionne Says He Doesn’t Plan to Testify at July Hearing


Sergio Marchionne, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV’s chief executive officer, said he doesn’t intend to speak at the hearing the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration set for July 2, reports Bloomberg Business.

“We have a person who is responsible for regulatory compliance,” he said on the sidelines of an event Tuesday evening in Detroit. “He’s much better briefed than I am.”

NHTSA on Monday scheduled a rare public hearing into how Fiat Chrysler is handling 20 recalls, covering about 10 million vehicles. NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind said it was a pattern of potential violations, rather than a specific recall, that brought the unusual action.

NHTSA has become more aggressive after being criticized by Congress for failing to be more active before last year’s revelation that about 2.6 million General Motors Co. cars had a known ignition-switch defect that went unrecalled for years. Regarding Fiat Chrysler, the agency said it has had complaints from consumers about the absence of recall notifications, the lack of parts when people schedule repairs and “misinformation from dealers.”

Marchionne said Fiat Chrysler has tried to comply with the recalls but struggles, like all automakers, to get vehicle owners to care.

“We have worked as hard as we could to try and make the recalls work,” he said. “One of the things I cannot do is somehow force customers to come in and bring their cars. I just can’t. And the repair rates of some of these recalls are either at or above industry average.”

The auto industry, he said, will adapt to the new regulatory environment.

New Phase 

“We’re entering a new phase of regulatory oversight,” he said. “We need to work with the agency to determine the proper level of cooperation. The real issue is that the process of adjusting to this new regulatory environment is going to be painful. We’re not used to this.”

Fiat Chrysler shares rose 0.1 percent to $15.62 at 9:38 a.m. New York time. They gained 35 percent this year through yesterday.

FCA US, the Auburn Hills, Michigan-based unit of London-based Fiat Chrysler, owns the Chrysler and Jeep brands. It was given until June 1 to turn over documents about its recall progress and could face fines of $7,000 a day for failing to cooperate with NHTSA’s special order.

“The average completion rate for FCA US LLC recalls exceeds the industry average and all FCA US campaigns are conducted in consultation with NHTSA,” the automaker said Monday in an e-mailed statement. “The company will cooperate fully.”

Rosekind declined to give an industry average after the FCA statement. He said earlier he was unhappy with the completion rate of recall repairs for a fuel tank defect on some Jeeps.

NHTSA rarely schedules public hearings on recalls. The agency usually negotiates with automakers behind the scenes over the scope of a recall, timing and potential remedies. NHTSA’s last such hearing on a recall was in 2012, for a single fix by Wildfire Motors, a small motorcycle importer.

Posted in Auto Industry NewsComments (0)

Fiat Chrysler’s U.S. Unit Redeems Bonds due 2019


The U.S. unit of carmaker Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has redeemed senior secured notes that mature in 2019 with a total face value of $2.875 billion, a filing with U.S. market regulator SEC showed, reports Reuters.

The notes, which carry a coupon of 8 percent, were redeemed at a price equal to their principal amount plus the applicable premium and any accrued and unpaid interests, according to the filing.

Fiat completed the buyout of its U.S. unit last year but needs to refinance all of Chrysler’s bonds and past credit agreements before it can gain full access to the unit’s cash. After this payment, FCA still has to repay or refinance Chrysler bonds due in 2021 and renegotiate other credit agreements.

Having full access to Chrysler’s money will help FCA carry out an ambitious five-year investment plan that includes spending 48 billion euros ($55 billion) to 2018 to boost sales by 60 percent to 7 million cars and increase net profit five-fold.

Posted in Auto Industry NewsComments (0)

Volkswagen Issues Second Recall for Minivan Ignitions


Volkswagen entered into a partnership with Chrysler in 2008 to help the German maker fill its void in the minivan segment in the U.S. Now that partnership is giving VW a headache as it’s recalling nearly 21,000 of the minivans for the second time, reported The Detroit Bureau.

VW is recalling them again to fix faulty ignition switches that can cause the vans to stall.

The recall covers roughly 18,500 Routan minivans from the 2009 model year and another 2,200 from 2010. The switches can unexpectedly slip out of the run position, shutting off the engines, knocking out power steering and brakes and disabling the air bags.

The vans were recalled last year due to the same problem but federal officials determined the repair was effective. Dealers will now replace the entire ignition switch. Volkswagen says parts will be available for 2009 models this month and for 2010 models in August.

Until the vehicles are inspected, owners should remove all items except the ignition key from their key rings. The key fob also should be removed, the filing said. The recall is an extension of two recalls: a 2011 recall of 2010 Routans and a 2014 recall of 2009 Routans.

No injuries or deaths have been reported as a result of the problem.

Chrysler recalled more than 700,000 minivan models from 2008 to 2010 for the identical issue.

For the first repair, FCA attempted to bolster the position of the ignition key position with a trim ring, which was deemed ineffective. Fiat Chrysler also elected to completely replace the ignitions in the minivans. It was similar to the problem that General Motors had with its small cars last year that resulted in the recall of nearly 2.6 million cars last year.

Posted in Auto Industry NewsComments (0)

Chrysler Ordered to Pay $150M due to Jeep Fire


A Georgia jury on Thursday awarded $150 million to the family of a boy who burned to death in a 1999 Jeep Grand Cherokee after a rear-end collision, finding Fiat Chrysler LLC’s rear-positioned fuel tank in the Jeep posed a fire risk and killed the child, reported The Detroit Bureau.

The Decatur County, Georgia, jury reached the verdict just hours after closing arguments concluded the eight-day trial, granting the family’s request for $120 million for the full value of 4-year-old Remington Walden’s life. Jurors found that Fiat Chrysler knew of the potential danger and the jury said Chrysler, the maker of Jeeps, must pay.

The jury ruled that Chrysler acted with reckless disregard for human life in selling the family of Remington “Remi” Walden a 1999 Jeep with a gas tank mounted behind the rear axle.

Walden, of Bainbridge, Georgia, was killed when the Jeep driven by his aunt was hit from behind by a pickup truck in March 2012. The fuel tank leaked, engulfing the Jeep in flames and killing the boy.

The verdict comes nearly two years after Chrysler compromised with a federal safety agency and agreed to a scaled-down recall of some older-model Jeeps with the rear-mounted tanks. The tanks have little structure to protect them if struck from behind, making them susceptible to punctures and fires.

Federal documents show that at least 75 people have died in post-crash fires because of the rear-mounted fuel tanks.

The 11-woman, one-man jury ruled after a nine-day trial that Chrysler was 99% at fault for the crash and the pickup driver was 1% at fault. Jurors also determined that Chrysler failed to warn the family of the hazards of driving the Jeep. They ruled that the Waldens should get $30 million for Remi’s pain and suffering and $120 million for the full value of his life, according to a verdict form.

Mike Palese, spokesman for Chrysler parent company FCA US, said the company is disappointed with the verdict and would appeal. Chrysler, he said, was prevented from presenting data submitted to federal safety regulators showing that the vehicles did not pose an unreasonable safety risk.

“The vehicles are not defective,” Palese said.

During the trial Fiat Chrysler Chief executive officer Sergio Marchionne has defended the safety of Jeep products. He also denied trying to stop top federal regulators from finding a safety defect in older Jeeps with rear-positioned fuel tanks. Instead, he argued that the vehicles are safe, in a recorded deposition that was played for Georgia jurors in a wrongful death trial over a fuel tank fire that killed the boy.

The automaker firmly believes the older Jeep SUVs with gas tanks located behind the rear axle are no more susceptible to fires than other SUVs, Marchionne said.

“Our analysis of that data suggested these were defect-free vehicles, and that they performed exactly as the rest of the comparative class performed in the marketplace at the time. Our analysis suggests very clearly that this is not a defect,” Marchionne said in video-taped deposition.

Under government pressure, Fiat Chrysler recalled an estimated 1.56 million 2002-07 Jeep Liberty and 1993-2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee SUVs for the problem in June 2013, and agreed to install trailer hitches to protect the gas tanks. In an abundance of caution, it sent letters to 2.27 million owners, though it is not clear how many are still on the road.

Fiat Chrysler notes the vehicles met safety requirements at the time they were built, and insists they are not defective. The company also agreed to conduct a customer service campaign for another 1.2 million 1999-2004 Grand Cherokees.

Posted in Auto Industry NewsComments (0)

Chrysler to Recall More Than 228,000 Jeep Cherokees


Chrysler will recall more than 228,000 vehicles because their airbags could unexpectedly inflate without a crash, reported the NYTimes.

The company will upgrade software governing side-curtain and seat-mounted side airbags in Jeep Cherokees from the 2014-15 model years, including more than 168,000 vehicles in the United States. Chrysler engineers initiated an investigation after getting reports of “a small number of inadvertent deployments involving drivers who executed extreme maneuvers.”

In these cases, the airbag systems, sensing potential rollovers, automatically activated. The action follows a much larger recall for inadvertent airbag deployments announced on Saturday by regulators at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. That recall covers about 2.1 million vehicles made by Chrysler, Toyota and Honda with airbags that might suddenly deploy.

Posted in Auto Industry NewsComments (0)

Page 1 of 1712345...10...Last »
css.php