California Autos Examiner

Sunday, July 27, 2008

On the Cheap: Chrysler May Dump High-End Sebring/Avenger

Chrysler looks to drop high-end models --

In a recent model comparison of similar cars, one automotive magazine placed the Avenger last and stated "Gaps between and first and last place don't get any bigger than this." A friend of mine recently rented an Avenger during a trip and was horrified by the car's interior trim and overall quality. You get the idea--the Avenger/Sebring aren't very good cars.

What can the current management do try and prop up sales? One idea is to add more content to lower end models. According to a memo sent to parts suppliers, that's what Chrysler is going to try and do. The old saw "lipstick on a pig" is tried and true in the automotive business and its what Chrysler is going to have to try until bigger changes can be made.

The decline of Chrysler is a real heart breaker for me. When Daimler originally stepped in, I thought it would be a great thing. Models like the 300C seemed to bear this out. However, Daimler absolutely gutted lower end models and fitted them with atrocious materials. Now Chrysler is on a very thin edge and it really needs a hit. Unless it has some tricks up its sleeve, I don't see any "save the company" models such as the K-car or minivan in the near future.

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