Autoblog – Sluggish Fiat 500 sales triggering layoffs at Chrysler engine plant

Chrysler has reportedly had to stop production of the 1.4-liter engine that powers the Cinquecento until demand catches up to supply. As a result, it has had to lay off a portion of the employees that build it.

I’ve meant to do a post on this for a while but honestly it’s all been too depressing. Remember when the Mini came out? And they had that AMAZING ad campaign plugging into the racing pedigree and the British heritage and all the rest of it that urban yuppies go nuts over? Yes? Yeah because it was a good ad campaign. The dudes working at the dealerships just had to sit there (in or next door to BMW dealerships), add people’s names to waiting lists and collect their commissions when the shipments came in. I know because Peter bought one.

Chrysler, on the other hand, sells them out of old Chrysler dealerships in blue collar neighborhoods where they used to sell to Chrysler customers. I, therefore, have never driven past a Fiat dealership. They hire Jennifer Lopez (and probably throw a fortune at her) to, apparently, drive around and then get out and dance. Because apparently they need to convince their customers that they can be “peppy” like a 42-year-old pop star who rapidly looks like she’d be much more comfortable cutting her hair off and turning into her mother does. The Abarth hasn’t been released, the convertible hasn’t been released, and nowhere do I see any mention of, like, Italy? Rome? Hot Italian chicks leaning over their 500s in black and white photos? And all the rest of the sort of thing that those of us who are actually likely to buy one of the damned things already think of when we think about the damned things? Instead they get JLo out, which just pisses me off and makes me not want to buy one anymore because I don’t like being insulted.

/rant