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Chrysler Stops 200 Production, Retooling for 2018 Ram 1500 Ensues

Chrysler 200 11 photos
Photo: Chrysler
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On Friday, Chrysler decided to pull the plug on the ill-fated 200, the model that ushered in a laughable tagline: “Imported from Detroit.” Considering that the 200 rides on a variation of the Fiat Compact platform introduced by the Alfa Romeo Giulietta in 2010, that’s not an import from Detroit if you ask me.
When all is said and done, however, the second-generation Chrysler 200 had it coming. Immediately after production started in 2014 for the 2015 model year, vehicles were recalled over a wiring harness with insufficient wire gauge. But cost cutting in a premium vehicle is the least of the 200’s problems. Over its production life, the mid-size sedan was also recalled over welds and the 9-speed automatic transmission.

Now that the Chrysler 200 followed the Dodge Dart’s fate, the Sterling Heights plant in Michigan is nothing more than a shadow of its former self. 2017 will see the complex undergo a year-long retooling, preparing itself for the next-generation Ram 1500 and, reportedly, a Jeep. As per the Detroit News, roughly 1,700 hourly workers find themselves on temporary layoffs in the meantime.

Although the Chrysler 200 is consigned to the history books of automotive mess-ups, the mid-size premium sedan continues to be featured on the manufacturer’s U.S. website as being on sale. For the 2016 model year, the entry-level LX grade starts from $22,115. The top-of-the-line 200C Platinum, on the other hand, is priced accordingly from $27,795. Available in either front- or all-wheel-drive, the 200 can be had with either a 2.4-liter Tigershark or a 3.6-liter Pentastar V6, both freely aspirated.

Did you know that Chrysler copied the Hyundai Sonata when designing the 200? This blatant mishap was confirmed by none other than Fiat Chrysler big kahuna Sergio Marchionne, who called the designers “dummies.” As if that wasn’t shameful enough for the Chrysler brand, Marchionne added that, “some people from design left some of their private parts on the table after the determination.” Good on you, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles! Now get your act together by thinking long and hard about the star-crossed 200.
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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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