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dictator27
07-30-2008, 02:52 PM
Just heard that Chrysler is talking to Tata about marketing Jeeps in India and to Fiat who wants to re-enter the North American market about leasing some of their plants to Fiat.

Terry Godkin
Surrey, British Columbia

JBOYLE
07-30-2008, 04:49 PM
FIAT might work if they change their name!:D

Then again, anyone under 30 has never heard of them in the U.S.
Their Euro compacts and city cars might be popular here.
Based on what I've seen in the U.K., they have lots of style and might be considered fun by younger folks.

Could we be looking atr a replay of the late 50s where a new generation of imports (then VW and Renaults) forced the U.S. automakers to think small, resulting in Larks, Falcons, Darts, Chevy IIs and Corvairs.

We might see the same thing soon either in "city" cars U.S. firms don't want to make, or high-tech or high-style Euro-based cars a bit byond the Cobalt (how old is that platform??? and is that REALLY the best GM can do?) and the long-in-the-tooth Focus. Finally Ford says it will start adapting its Euro line to America in 2010-12.
Only 35 years late!
When I first visited the U.K. as a college student in 1975 I was amazed by their small cars and wondered why after the first gas crisis Ford was still selling V-8 Torinos instead of Ford UK/German sedans that were good sized (large over there, mid-size here)and luxurious (by the standards of the day).

63 Avanti R1 2788
1914 Stutz Bearcat
(George Barris replica)

Washington State

Scott
07-30-2008, 04:55 PM
Oh heck, why don't they just get it over with and sell everything lock, stock and barrel to Tata or Fiat. Slow declines are the worst...

showbizkid
07-30-2008, 06:41 PM
You mean like AMC's?


[img=left]http://members.cox.net/clarknovak/lark.gif[/img=left]

Clark in San Diego
'63 F2/Lark Standard
http://studeblogger.blogspot.com
www.studebakersandiego.com

PlainBrownR2
07-30-2008, 07:20 PM
Yah under 30 and born at the start of the 80's, how could I not know anything about a company who also produced the blood brother Yugo 45 [:o)]

556063
07-30-2008, 07:25 PM
Chrysler is the only manufacturer who supplies the United States that has idle 4 cylinder manufacturing capacity right now. Everyone else, including the imports, can't build enough 4 cylinder cars right now. Someone will end up using Chrysler's capacity if the current market conditions persist. Chrysler's 4 cylinder dillema should cast aside any doubt that the Daimlerized designs have been a complete and utter failure. Their current 4 cylinder designs are in particular a disaster.

4 cylinder cars only get hot when fuel goes up. Small cars represented the smallest volume portion of the American market up until the current conditions. The fact the market is down somewhere near 20% means many large vehicle drivers are simply sitting this year out, and driving their car a little longer. The leasing restrictions form a bigger long term threat to large, premium vehicles than consumer tastes.

Anyway, Chrysler used to build many more passenger cars in the United States, and many of them were small and 4 cylinder. The fact they have idle 4 cylinder capacity should serve as an example that just because you can build a small economy car, that doesn't automatically mean they will sell. Even in today's market.





Kevin Wolford
Plymouth, IN

55 Champion
60 Lark VI Conv.
63 Avanti R1

53k
08-02-2008, 07:55 PM
quote:Originally posted by JBOYLE
FIAT might work if they change their name!:D

What! Deprive us of the old Fix It Again Tony nickname FIAT so richly deserved?


Paul Johnson, Wild and Wonderful West Virginia
'53 Commander Starliner (since 1966)
'64 Daytona Wagonaire (original owner)
'64 Daytona Convertible (2006)
Museum R-4 engine
1962 Gravely Model L (Studebaker-Packard serial plate)
1972 Gravely Model 430 (Studebaker name plate, Studebaker Onan engine)

showbizkid
08-03-2008, 08:46 AM
quote:[i]Anyway, Chrysler used to build many more passenger cars in the United States, and many of them were small and 4 cylinder.


And some of them were quite good. I myself owned an '84 Shelby Rampage that looked fantastic, moved like greased lightning and surprised a lot of F-body GM jobs [}:)]

I have some fond memories of those cars.


[img=left]http://members.cox.net/clarknovak/lark.gif[/img=left]

Clark in San Diego
'63 F2/Lark Standard
http://studeblogger.blogspot.com
www.studebakersandiego.com

studegary
08-03-2008, 08:12 PM
For those that don't know, FIAT peviously built cars in the USA (1910-1918). The plant was in Poughkeepsie, NY.

The Chrysler/Plymouth dealership that I worked at also had a Fiat dealership in the '50s-'70s/'80s. I remember about a 1957 1100 sedan that I thought was quite a zippy and good handling sedan for the '50s. In the '60s - '70s, I drove some new models that Fiat came out with and I couldn't wait to get out of those. The name Strada comes to mind, but my memory may be off on that.

Gary L.
Wappinger, NY

SDC member since 1968
Studebaker enthusiast much longer

raprice
08-04-2008, 06:29 PM
My wife & I were recently in France and we saw the new Fiat 500, or what used to be called the Topolino. Boy, what a cute car. If they brought it to the U.S., it would probably sell very well. I also read an article about it in Automobile magazine. They were thrilled with the way it drove and how well it was put together.
Rog

'59 Lark VI Regal Hardtop

bams50
08-05-2008, 05:43 AM
When I was a teen I bought a running Fiat 128 sedan for $10. I drove it for 2 days and it literally broke in half leaving a stop sign[:0] Even at a sawbuck I overpaid for that thing[:I]

Robert (Bob) Andrews Owner- Studebakeracres- on the IoMT (Island of Misfit Toys!)
Parish, central NY 13131

"Some people live for the rules, I live for exceptions"- 311

"It was the last chance for Studebaker to turn things around. The company was down to its last bullet, and this new small car was it. They called it the Lark"

Swifster
08-06-2008, 10:21 PM
quote:Originally posted by JBOYLE

We might see the same thing soon either in "city" cars U.S. firms don't want to make, or high-tech or high-style Euro-based cars a bit byond the Cobalt (how old is that platform??? and is that REALLY the best GM can do?) and the long-in-the-tooth Focus. Finally Ford says it will start adapting its Euro line to America in 2010-12.
Only 35 years late!
When I first visited the U.K. as a college student in 1975 I was amazed by their small cars and wondered why after the first gas crisis Ford was still selling V-8 Torinos instead of Ford UK/German sedans that were good sized (large over there, mid-size here)and luxurious (by the standards of the day).


Not all are coming here, unless you want a Mazda. The new Mondeo shares the platform with the Mazda 6. The soon to be restyled Fusion gets the same platform that's been under Mazda's since 2003. The Cobalt is a newer platform than the focus. The Cobalt was redesigned for 2005. The Cavalier shares nothing with it.

European cars in the '70's and '80's would not meet US crash standards, fuel standards, emissions, etc. Rules passed over the last 10 years or so have made US and EU standards far closer than in the past. Ford has attempted more than most bringing in the Merkur lines and the Fiesta. The Fiesta was replaced here by the '81 Escort. The Merkurs had a lot of problems, not the least of which was the price ($$$).

Platform sharing by Ford and GM gives both a broader base from which to design a vehicle and makes them closer to each other. But this goes both ways. They both also use Japanese and Korean platforms under both EU and US models. An example of this will be the Mazda 2 platform that will be under the '10 Ford Fiesta for both EU and US sales. The Saturn Aura and Vue are both based off Opel platforms. The Chevy Aveo is a Daewoo.

Many EU capital cities like London or Paris are far more congested than the typical US city. New York, Los Angeles and Chicago may have their problems, but not many purchased small cars while gas was reasonably cheap. Gas in MI in '98 was down to .86 cents per gallon. Why would I buy a small car instead of truck? The US government tried to mandate small cars in the early '80's with CAFE (Corporate Average Fuel Economy). All this did was make cars smaller, and trucks bigger. If CAFE didn't exist, there would be a lot more large RWD cars than there are now and trucks would still be a nitch market.

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Tom - Mulberry, FL

1964 Studebaker Daytona - 289 4V, 4-Speed (Cost To Date: $2125.60)

http://i74.photobucket.com/albums/i280/Swifster/rollingpi.gif http://i74.photobucket.com/albums/i280/Swifster/The%20Daytona%20File/Avatar%20Size/01-01-05TheStartingPoint.jpg http://i74.photobucket.com/albums/i280/Swifster/The%20Daytona%20File/Avatar%20Size/07-17-07FrontClipRemoved.jpg http://i74.photobucket.com/albums/i280/Swifster/The%20Daytona%20File/Avatar%20Size/04-11-08CoolingFan.jpg