Do we have a terminal case of the Chryslers or a case for Chrysler? Pr. Wobbles, Attorney at Lawns, is here! My class-action prescription: An unapologetic focus on fleets and families, lending infrastructure to automakers that wish to sell in the US market without major commitment, and being rebirthed as an app.
Wordy post below but you have the key points so skip to the comments and discuss!
This is how we keep Chrysler existing as a brand even if they never build a physical product ever again. By using the very strong branding behind UConnect we can create an app that encompasses mobility solutions through partnerships for ride-hailing, delivery, and ownership assistance. Having a car versus having a ride is the difference between failure and success going forward. Chrysler doesn’t need to build the ride, they need to insert themselves as the medium.
The Chrysler UConnect Services app could allow you to look through Uber, Lyft, Turo, and other ride applications simultaneously, perhaps favoring FCA product owners on either end. These C-UConnect services could allow you to utilize GrubHub, Uber Eats, plus any other restaurants that have their own proprietary applications for order and delivery. This app could even consolidate your YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, LinkedIn, Drivetribe, Wheelwell, and all the other platforms you have to go through into a single profile. Imagine subscribing to a single contact and being able to view anything they post under their name rather than following through each individual application. That’s how Chrysler UConnect keeps you connected!
All the money is in data so rather than chase a place in the market let us create a marketplace to meet in. Starting with the millions of customers that currently with UConnect in their dashes, move the tech into their devices, get it into their hands, and become the premiere place for advertisers to find an audience.
There are many companies looking to sell cars in the US but they can’t take on the astronomical financial commitment for this succeed-or-die market. PSA, SAIC, GAC, BYD, Chery, Great Wall, Ssangyong, and far too many startups from every country would love an easy entrance into the US without the struggle of staying here.
The US loves buying untried products, it’s longevity that is the killer. Make Chrysler into a gateway for these outside brands. Build an opportunity for these outside brands (as well as Chrysler) to make the money and run before the competition can respond and make you irrelevant.
Who is the number one buyer of new cars?
Let’s say that Citroën and Peugeot would like to find out how the DS 7 Crossback and 5008 will be received. They get the products authorized for sale in the US and present the vehicles to Chrysler and their group of dealers interested in being buyers/concierges for these cars. We will call these dealerships, “Stargates.”
Chrysler Stargates take delivery of vehicles ordered online, assist with financing solutions ($$$), charge a fee for using their Stargates, and give customers a place to take the cars for warranty and recall services. If these cars are moving quickly through these Stargates then PSA, GAC, Great Wall, and any startup company can choose to invest further into the US. If they don’t, leaving and reentering the market is as easy as walking through a revolving door. Chrysler is just a very heavily compensated doorman.
Automakers have been so focused on what every other competitor is doing that they have all abandoned brand integrity and establishing consistency and ease of service/operation. I can rant on this another time but families and fleets need someone to offer cheap cars (not value, actual cheap cars).
Dodge is not the brand to use for cheap cars anymore because leveraging SRT will allow them to move the brand upmarket through performance, design, and driver-centered marketing. Basically, Dodge-SRT hits the $30,000 to $50,000 market while Chrysler models focus on the $20,000 to $28,000 range.
Below is my suggested lineup if FCA decides to attend to this low profit but high volume market. I’m not going to detail trims and engines since I don’t think they really matter at these prices for the size of vehicle you can get with a lot of safety and driver assistance tech.
Conquest CUV (5+2 Passenger) and Dodge Journey Successor
Conquest 100 - $22,800
Conquest 200 - $25,200
Conquest 300 - $28,300
Conquest C-Hybrid (PHEV) - $36,600
Atlantic SUV (7 to 8 Passenger) based on Jeep Grand Commander
Atlantic 100 - $25,700
Atlantic 200 - $27,900
Atlantic 300 - $30,100
Pacifica Minivan (7 to 8 Passengers)
Pacifica 100 - $26,500
Pacifica 200 - $28,700
Pacifica 300 - $31,300
Pacifica C-Hybrid (PHEV) - $39,900
Voyager Shuttle Van (12 to 15 Passengers) based on next gen Ram Promaster and Promaster City
Voyager 100 - $29,700
Voyager 200 - $32,900
Voyager 300 - $35,600
Chrysler now has two options for making money and being a major part of the auto industry without ever building a car again plus an option if they do decide to build some products. The size and price points are what matter most and Chrysler would be better off partnering up, especially if an outside automaker presents something outstanding.