7 Things FCA is Actually Doing Right

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7 Things FCA is Actually Doing Right

We recently did a story on 10 Reasons Why FCA is in Big Trouble, but Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is actually doing a lot of things right, too. The company may be in the news a lot recently because of recalls, hacking and the crazy things its CEO Sergio Marchionne is saying, but the company also has a lot to brag about.

Here are 7 things FCA is actually doing right:

1. Hellcat ALL the things!

dodge-hellcat-hemi-v8-engine

Dodges have been getting a lot of respect lately with its Charger and Challenger Hellcat models. With each packing a mind-warping 707 horsepower from a supercharged 6.2L HEMI V8, what is even more nuts is how affordable these cars remain. For under $64,000, you can have a 707-hp Hellcat. Try to find another car that offers this much power that doesn’t cost six figures or more.

ALSO SEE: 10 Cars the Jeep Track Hawk Will Beat in a Drag Race

The news that a Hellcat-powered Jeep Grand Cherokee Track Hawk is coming is icing on the cake. Dodge has performance at the top of its agenda, and we can’t fault them for that.


2. Bringing Alfa Romeo back as a serious competitor

alfa-romeo-4c-spider

The Alfa Romeo 4C is the new lustworthy exotic car and the upcoming Ferrari-powered Giulia promises to be just as wild. FCA has to be given proper credit for bringing Alfa Romeo back into the consciousness of the North American automotive enthusiast. Not only is the 4C sexy like an Italian underwear model, but it is a hardcore, purpose-built performance machine. It may not be the most comfortable or practical car, but every single person who drives it ends up falling in love with it, which is not an easy thing to accomplish. The car is flawed, but it exhibits a sense of purpose, intimacy and engagement that is very rare these days.

Alfa Romeo does not make any compromises, and in a world where cars cut corners everywhere to cater to the masses, the lightweight 4C is unique for being made for a very specific type of driver.


3. Jeeps are hot sellers

2015-Jeep-Renegade

Jeep continues to bring in huge sales for FCA. Sales have been growing month over month, and year over year. Jeeps have devoted cult followings and no matter which model, all Jeeps are some of the most off-road capable cars you can buy.


4. Ram trucks are fantastic

DodgeRamExterior6

Ram has been getting a lot of praise for its EcoDiesel pickups, which are powerful, efficient, and still stand alone as the only diesel-powered trucks in the half-ton segment (at least until the new Nissan Titan XD arrives). Along with its great powertrain, Ram offers class-exclusive air suspension and some useful add-ons like the RamBox storage system, not to mention a great interior. Much to FCA’s liking, Ram sales are still increasing every month, with the brand seeing a 4 percent jump in August.

In the Heavy Duty pickup arena, Ram is always battling it out with Ford over best-in-class ratings, but this competition means that both brands are pushing each other towards new levels of capability. It’s a good sign when an automaker will fight for the top spot.


5. The Viper is still alive

2016 Dodge Viper ACR

Let’s not forget that Dodge makes the Viper, an icon from the 1990s and one of the last hand-built, naturally aspirated V10 beasts you can buy with a manual transmission. And it’s still built in Detroit. The difference now is that the Viper is so much more sophisticated (and even more European-feeling) than it used to be, so it’s no longer the knuckle-dragger that only cared about straight-line speed and tried to kill you. The Viper is now a serious and quite refined performance car. Viper owners are also extremely loyal. They rarely sell their cars and often end up buying more than one.

ALSO SEE: One Texas Couple Owns 79 Dodge Viper Sports Cars


6. Minivans

2015-dodge-grand-caravan

Laugh all you want, but the Dodge Grand Caravan and its Chrysler cousin are two of North America’s best-selling minivans, and FCA has this market cornered. Combined with the Chrysler Town & Country, FCA sells the most minivans in America.


7. UConnect is the best infotainment system

2015 Dodge Challanger Scat Pack Shaker

UConnect is one of the best infotainment systems on the market right now. With a big, easy to read and responsive screen, UConnect is probably the most user-friendly system out there. A 6-year-old could probably figure out how to use it, a great testament to how easy the menus are to navigate and how intuitive the system is.

Discuss this story on our Dodge Forum

  • Eric Cameron

    Absolutely agree with all of these. But for some reason I can’t recommend anything other than a newer Jeep from FCA. Perhaps a “7 things FSA is doing wrong” list should be made too?

    Things I’d like to see from them going forward:
    -Make a value V8 viper. Not everyone wants a V10 for obvious reasons. Won’t need to put in all that fancy leather in there either. Just simple leathers like in the Corvette.
    -They need to redesign the Dart to what the Charger looks like. If they can figure that out, I see more sales coming!
    -They need to figure out fuel economy with their engines. They’re not competitive for any of these cars.
    -Their cars are quite heavy. Materials engineering needs to be their top priority to lower the weight.

  • 4ArthurDent

    If Ferrari can have a paddle shit automatic then so can the Viper to increase sales. FCA is not a car collectors club its a automobile company in business to build and sell cars.

  • Mark S

    Agree on these except the Viper. I like the Viper, would love to own one, but when they had to furlough the car, surely that was a sign of where the Viper is going as it stands. If they could somehow lower the spec and lower the price, they may have a fight of it, especially against the C7 Vette.

  • Kyle Miller

    I would agree with bringing Alfa back

  • Craig

    There full sized cars are just too heavy. The 2015 Chrysler 300C with the HEMI weighs 4408 lbs. It’s 198.6″ long and has a 120″ wheelbase. The 2016 Cadillac CT6 weighs less than 3700 lbs. It’s 204″ long and has a 122″ wheelbase. The Cadillac is obviously a bigger car and weighs at least 700 lbs less. That’s a HUGE difference. Can you imagine if Chrysler changed nothing about the 300C or Charger [including the Hellcat] but made them 700 lbs lighter?

  • Mark S

    The Giula looks good, maybe a little too 3 Series from the side profile, but that is a not a bad thing. The front is all Alfa though. Hope it drives as good as it looks and competing with the XE and ATS as the best driving luxury sedan. Think will all these entrants having a good base model is key for winning that segment, a sweet handling 2.0t will make folks cross shop.

  • Mark S

    All these are on the old Mercedes E Class platform though? Cannot recall if the Gibli was an all new platform or just a modified version of an existing. Either way, agree they need a light platform for their larger cars, powerful engines and retro looks will only go so far (and not help with C.A.F.E. adherence).

  • Auto Motive

    You missed one…..Wards top 10 best interiors with the Challenger and Charger winning. I finally sat in one and the interior is absolutely gorgeous. Can’t wait for the new Cuda in 2018 which will be lighter, smaller and still pack the hellcat. It will be a track monster!

  • Auto Motive

    Right on. GM took the advice of many vette fans and the Z06 now has the 8 speed auto. MY 20 yr old vette will be sold next year and I have my eye on several cars with the Z06, ZL1 Camaro, Charger hellcat and maybe a new GT500 or Mach 1 Mustang if Ford options it with a automatic. Price point $99k…..the test drive will seal the deal. Now for the stock market to get back to double digit returns.

  • maserati123

    I THINK FCA HAS DONE A WONDERFUL JOB,CONSIDERING WHERE THEY WERE A FEW SHORT YEARS AGO…ALL CAR COMPANIES HAD RECALLS,FROM AUDI TO TOYOTA,M-BENZ AND BMW TO NAME A FEW,BUT FCA NEED TO DO A BETTER JOB IN QC,BRING THE JEEP PICKUP TO SHOW ROOMS ASAP.I LOVE FCA,AND WISH THEM THE BEST.I HAVE 2 OF THEIR CARS,AND NEVER HAD ANY PROBLEMS,AND WILL SOON BUY 2-3 MORE INCLUDING A JEEP AND A ALFA GUILIA.

  • maserati123

    AND I WANT ON..WOULD BE MY THIRD.

  • maserati123

    WELL YOU ARE RIGHT,AND IT TAKES TIME,BUT I THINK THEY ARE DOING OK CONSIDERING THEY WERE BROKE A FEW YEARS AGO.BUT SERGIO NEEDS TO SHUT UP AND GET ON WITH THE JOB,THEY WAY HE HAS BEEN DOING.