Home » Stellantis Sold Negative One (-1) Chrysler 200 Sedan Last Quarter And I Just Want To Know How

Stellantis Sold Negative One (-1) Chrysler 200 Sedan Last Quarter And I Just Want To Know How

Chrysler 200 Negative
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In America, it’s pretty hard to send a car back to its maker. Sure, manufacturers occasionally take stewardship of museum pieces, but mere used cars? That’s unusual. So, when Stellantis reported that it had sold negative one Chrysler 200 in the first quarter of 2024, our collective eyebrows were raised.

How does an automaker sell negative one of a car, especially a model that was nixed from the portfolio years ago?

Vidframe Min Top
Vidframe Min Bottom

If you’ve wiped all memory of Chrysler’s last midsize sedan nameplate from your mind, allow me to offer a refresher. The first Chrysler 200 was a warmed-over Chrysler Sebring launched with an Eminem-featuring Super Bowl ad that, in hindsight, is probably one of the most ridiculous celebrity co-signs ever. I mean, the Chrysler 200 being endorsed by Marshall Mathers makes the implication of LeBron James daily driving a Kia K900 seem believable. However, a second-generation model arrived for the 2015 model year, and instead of sharing bones with a Dodge Journey, it shared a platform with the Alfa Romeo Giulietta. Hey, that’s progress.

2015 Chrysler 200 2

Unfortunately, it wasn’t quite enough progress. While the range-topping 3.6-liter all-wheel-drive model was alarmingly potent in the same manner as a Taco Bell Chipotle Chicken melt with Fire sauce, the base 2.4-liter four-banger powertrain just didn’t cut it. In a 2014 road test of the four-cylinder model, Car And Driver noted improvement, but not enough to put the Chrysler at the head of the pack. As per the mag:

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Although the new-from-the-ground-up 200 is a fully baked product, we can’t help but feel that drivers with sporting intentions will find it a little on the light side of hearty. The 200 doesn’t have the poor-man’s Bentley street presence of its larger 300 sidekick, either. In a segment flush with blue-ribbon entries that manage to mix four-door practicality with genuine fun-to-drive character, the 200 is still a few ingredients short of being top-shelf material.

Perhaps as a result, the second-generation Chrysler 200 had a short lifespan, entering production in March of 2014 and exiting stage left in December of 2016. Despite the last one having long since departed from Stellantis’ Sterling Heights, Mich. assembly plant, however, the nameplate continues to haunt sales charts like a mischievous specter.

2015 Chrysler 200 Interior

How does an automaker sell less than zero cars? Is this just a matter of reconciling data? Was there some sort of buyback that occurred, or is something even stranger going on? Our own Mark Tucker wonders if Stellantis “thought they sold it and found it in a dusty corner,” and while that seems entirely possible given the nature of the 200, it’s still on the farfetched side of things. At the same time, considering this thing was discontinued more than seven years ago, that should’ve given Stellantis plenty of time to take care of a statistical error.

2015 Chrysler 200 3

Needless to say, we reached out to Stellantis on this and will update this story if we hear back. Our best guess is that this is just Stellantis correcting past data, but it still seems odd. All we can say for now is that this is a deeply weird figure, albeit one that’s published in a real quarterly sales report. If anything, it might serve as a metaphor for finding joy in life’s drudgery. Even within a subject, most find deeply boring, you might stumble upon some bizarre and amusing stuff.

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(Photo credits: Chrysler)

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Alpine 911
Alpine 911
8 days ago

Pretty simple. FCA liked it so much they bought one for themselves.

TennesseeCaver
TennesseeCaver
9 days ago

Let me jump on my Chrysler soap box for a moment.

TL:DR – FCA did/does some shady things to cover internal inventory losses.

I previously worked as a production planner for a major automotive supplier who shipped direct to the big three plants. I noticed a trend where all of the FCA plants were claiming short shipments against us (i.e. claiming we shipped 15 alternators when a full pallet would be 36). This would often result in us having to expedite additional parts are our expense, as well as eating the cost of the missing parts. Something like that was not possible within the checks and balances at our facility. This didn’t sit right with me, as it only occurred with FCA plants, not Ford, not GM. After doing some digging with what information I could get from my access the FCA system, I put the pieces together. A FCA plant would conduct an internal cycle count of parts, and make an inventory adjustment. Then, when the next shipment from us was received, they would claim we short shipped them the exact amount that was shown on the cycle count adjustment. Most likely, their guys were dropping alternators and damaging them, throwing them away, and claiming short shipments to us to cover the cost/inventory. I spent HOURS going through records and collecting the evidence to prove my case. Not one FCA plant, but all of them were doing this. I took this info to our sales team, essentially proving fraud, or at least providing justification to push back and investigate. They balked. Wouldn’t touch the issue… so it probably continues to this day.

Defenestrator
Defenestrator
7 days ago
Reply to  TennesseeCaver

Sales team might have been the wrong ones to bring it to. They don’t care if production eats the losses, but they do care if they lose the contract and the sales numbers dip.

TXJeepGuy
TXJeepGuy
9 days ago

Likely a deal they were forced to buy back. Not due to mechanical issues, but likely a deep subprime deal that was repo’ed and the subprime company had enough ammo that the dealer falsified the application/income/whatever to get the deal bought. The agreements between the dealership and these lenders have a lot of reasons why a repo can go back on the dealer… we just typically don’t see these unwinds as clearly in the sales numbers.

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