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Chrysler Out Of The Frying Pan. That's Good, Right?

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Chrysler is sizzling

Chrysler is sizzling

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The last 24 hours have been big for Chrysler. The long and short of it appears to be that (a) the company will likely avoid bankruptcy court, and (b) its relationship with Fiat will soon get conjugal. Here's a quick rundown of the headlines:

Creditors concede -- About $5 billion of Chrysler's outstanding debt has been forgiven. In exchange, the company's creditors and the U.S. government will share 10% ownership in the company. Certain asshats (cough, cough, Glenn Beck, cough) may have something to say about that. [WashingtonPost]

What the UAW didn't want for Christmas -- In exchange for the many concessions it's taken during negotiations, the United Auto Workers union is getting a 55% stake in Chrysler. We can't wait to sit in on future talks between the union and CEOs. It'll be like a Sally Field film fest, but with just Norma Rae and Sybil. [WSJ]

A foreign affair -- Between the 55% stake owned by the UAW and the 10% stake of banks and the feds, Chrysler still has 35% to give away. But to whom? Oh, right: Fiat. We've got a pretty good idea who'll "play the guy" on their wedding night. [TCC]

MIA -- Where's Daimler in all this? Long gone. Over the weekend, Daimler and Chrysler reached an agreement, relieving Daimler of its 20% stake in the company. [PRNewswire's least entertaining press release ever]

Behind the green curtain -- To put dealers at ease--not that they have any reason to be nervous, of course--Chrysler held a private meeting over the weekend, where it pulled a classic parent trick by distracting dealers with something bright and shiny: a Fiat sports sedan that'll soon morph into a Chrysler model. Rumor has it that the dealers then drank juice boxes and went dutifully to the nap corner. [MotorAuthority]

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Comments (3)
  1. "No, it's not good."

    Chrysler, if it keeps shuffling forward, is a zombie company. Its cars keep receiving the worst reliability scores on Consumer Reports and I've read they have nothing in their pipeline. We've all seen enough George Romero movies to know how to kill zombies, haven't we?

  2. "Agreed, but..."

    ...they do have Jeep in their corner, which has remarkable customer loyalty. (Even though Jeep owners like me find the product quality iffy.)
    Personally, I think Chrysler's pinning a lot of its hopes for innovation on Fiat. Which seems like a reasonable thing to do, but we all know the adage about eggs and baskets, right?

  3. Chrysler got screwed by MB. Fiat will be worse however. They make the crappiest cars in the world. They don't even sell in Australia, & we have 52 car makers in our market. So I see little future for chrysler under fiat. Note how many countries use Italian currency for their trading?

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