Amid Bankrupacy Rumors, Chrysler Betting on 2009 Ram Pickup

Discussion in 'Chrysler' started by Chuck, Jun 27, 2008.

  1. Chuck

    Chuck just the messenger

    "In a slightly declining or declining market, the best product wins," he said. "We think we're going to be able to pick up market share even in a tough market." (with the 2009 Ram)

    [xfloat=right][/xfloat]AP - June 26, 2008

    Right timing? - Ed

    Chelsea, Mich. - Gas prices are above $4 per gallon. Full-size pickup truck sales are down more than 21 percent through May. The U.S. auto market is in a downward funk. Great time to introduce a new pickup truck, right?

    Strange as it may seem, that's what Chrysler LLC executives are thinking when it comes to the new 2009 Dodge Ram, due in showrooms by September or October.

    "We're actually pretty optimistic about it," said Deborah Wahl Meyer, Chrysler's marketing chief, who adds that despite a downturn, pickups remain the largest segment of the market. "There's a large group of core people who need trucks." -- [rm][/rm]
  2. Earthling

    Earthling Trying to be kind to Mother Earth

    "It's all going to come back," he said. "It's taking a severe hit, there's no doubt, and were feeling that pain right now."

    No, it's not coming back, and never will. The pickup truck will never again see the market share it has had the last few years.

  3. kmactavi

    kmactavi Well-Known Member

    They are not going to come back the same, but Meyers is right, there are people who need pickups - but how much more attractive would they be if they improved their trucks FE? From the looks of that Dodge, not much has changed...

  4. Bike123

    Bike123 Well-Known Member

    There will be plenty of lightly used trucks on the market, too.
  5. Vooch

    Vooch Well-Known Member

    Pick-ups and SUV's are very likely to go from a 52% - 55% market share to 25% in the next 18 - 36 months.

    25% market share is still a lot of cars ( say 3-4 million ) - but it spells very, very hard times for the big 3 - they simply can't retool fast enough.
  6. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi All:

    ___You have to feel for the Big 2.5 and the gambles they have taken the past few years. Or not and wish them an unfriendly demise. I am in the first camp but it is not like we have been screaming that they have to be ready for $3.00 gas and here we are at $4.00 + with no end in sight.

    ___In Europe where gasoline is approaching $10.00 per, somehow they get around without the F150, Silverado or Ram? How doe s a conglomeration of countries with more people and construction than the US somehow get by without a FSP to drive to work on a daily basis even if they are in the construction business? Why is it that the American’s “need trucks” and the European’s do not? Maybe Chrysler can believe their way to higher RAM sales but apparently the 27% drubbing they have taken this year is not enough to change their minds?

    ___We can only wish them the best of luck knowing where their fate lies with the kind of thinking they are currently engaged in.

    ___Good Luck

  7. aca2983

    aca2983 Well-Known Member

    You can't run a contracting firm with a fleet of Priuses.

    The pickup truck market will remain, but they'll be used for real work and not for casual users.

    Expect to see an alightment back to basics and "regular" cabs, and fewer Quad Cab models with luxury features. Who knows, maybe even manual transmissions again. (I miss Ford's old inline 6 with a 5-speed)

    A perfect example of this is my father. His F-150 sits in the garage (and this was pre-gas spike...) spotless and polished. To my knowledge, it's never actually hauled anything. For any actual work, my old 93 Mazda B2200 (which he now owns) does duty. They use the Mazda for everything and drive it everywhere.
  8. Vooch

    Vooch Well-Known Member


    What do you think the numbers will be for June Sales ?

    Here is my guess:

    Cars - flat absolute numbers & 57- 60% market share

    Light Trucks - way down possibly as much as 35% y.o.y & 43 - 40% market share
  9. Chuck

    Chuck just the messenger

    Very true, but a lot of pickups were not bought for real work.
  10. BailOut

    BailOut My favorite holiday is Earth Day!

    The AAMA does not seem interested in bringing back mini trucks but I wonder if some of the other Asian manufacturers will. I think there would be a decent market for them among contractor types, likely larger than the original market back in the 80s and 90s.

    Many local contractors are making changes along this line. A Journeyman Electrician I know has concocted a scheme where he leaves his blinged out and lifted F-350 in Incline Village and now drives a beat up old Metro he bought to commute the 30 miles between Incline Village and Carson City each day.

    A residential painter I know replaced one of the two Tacomas in his small fleet with a used Matrix. He told me it does just fine except for when they need the largest ladders, and that's when the remaining Tacoma comes out.

    The HVAC guy that came to do some work in our office had everything he needed packed into a small minivan.

    When I pass by the spot where the road crews work to create the new segment of highway 395 in South Reno it no longer looks like a Ford and GM truck commercial. These guys don't bring any tools to their job other than safety gear, some hand tools and MP3 players as all the heavy equipment is kept on site so now all I see lined up out there are passenger cars.

    I guess what I'm trying to say is that even among the contracting crowd there is rarely a need for a full-sized truck, or even a mid-sized one.
  11. FireEngineer

    FireEngineer Well-Known Member

    I just have to see Jim Press banging his head into the wall. All these former Toyota people working for Chrysler probably can't believe their futrue rides on selling this kind of vehicle in this kind of buyers climate.

  12. I love pickups and Dodge but this is just stupid. Someone needs to be replaced in high places and in large numbers @ Chrysler.
  13. Chuck

    Chuck just the messenger

    New stanza from Simon & Garfunkel....

    Where have you gone Lee Iccocca?
    Detroit needs your more than ever, wo, wo, wo....
  14. basjoos

    basjoos Well-Known Member

    When I was recently in Ireland, most contractors were driving small car-based minivans like the VW Caddy and occasionally a small pickup truck.
  15. ALS

    ALS Super Moderator Staff Member

    Re: Amid Bankruptcy Rumors, Chrysler Betting on 2009 Ram Pickup

    I guess with out come based education they don't teach history anymore.
    This from the same people that put out a commercial in the mid nineteen seventies that had a balloon with wheels on it. The announcer said while everyone else is going small Chrysler is staying big. I'm pretty sure it was an ad for a Newport or Imperial.
    Three or four years later they were in Bankruptcy.
  16. Xringer

    Xringer Older Member

    "But in an era of expensive gas, the new four-wheel-drive truck with a 390-horsepower, 5.7-liter Hemi V-8 gets about 14 miles per gallon in the city and 18 on the highway, which Chrysler says is competitive."

    On exactly what planet will this be competitive? Or, is Chrysler talking about truck racing??

    "So far this year, though, gas prices and the down economy have caused buyers to shun the Ram and other trucks, with Ram sales down 27 percent through May."

    I'm just an old farm boy, I have have a feeling that somebody is going to be needing CPR when the June numbers come out..

    "It's all going to come back," he said. "It's taking a severe hit, there's no doubt, and were feeling that pain right now."

    What the heck?? What exactly is going to come back? The T-Rex??

    I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but the Ram is going an early grave (and none too soon IMHO).

    When gas is 10 or 12 bucks a gallon, what are the owners of these mega trucks going to do?
    Stick a solar panel on the back and just sit in them and listen to the radio?

    Hey! Park it in the backyard, line the bed with plastic and make a pool for the kids!! :Banane30:
  17. ILAveo

    ILAveo Well-Known Member

    I view this as a "when all you have is lemons, make lemonade" strategy by Chrysler. The research, testing, design and production plans were probably almost complete when Cerberus took over and it looks like a market segment that will still exist (albeit in shrunken form) for a long time, so they're gonna bring out the new model that's already designed one way or another. The product development cycle is three to five years, so we still have a couple of years before we really know how current ownership is approaching Chrysler's product mix.

    Chrysler supporters have to hope big trucks are not where they are putting most of their current product development dollars. A compact pickup would help them keep current Ram owners loyal in an era of high gas prices; A hybrid minivan would help them hold on to/win back their Caravan owners--to name two unfilled market segments that would play to Chrysler strengths.
  18. Robert Lastick

    Robert Lastick Well-Known Member

    No truer words were ever spoken, Harry.

    Why can't they see that??:confused:
  19. Indigo

    Indigo Witch with wry sense of humor

    I think there is always going to be a market for powerful, sturdy, contractor-grade pickup trucks. What is changing in the $4/gallon climate is that the people who actually need these behemoths are still buying them while those who don't are not. That being said, Chrysler needs to have a more diverse lineup if they want to survive.
  20. Bike123

    Bike123 Well-Known Member

    Taking BailOut's electrician story further, someone with a super long commute can use a pickup with cap to camp out in WalMart parking lots all week, and make the long drive home for the weekend.

    I prefer living close to work and going home every night, but if the house in the exurbs won't sell, and the pickup won't sell, and you can't afford the gas to drive every day...

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