Fiat To Sell 491 Of Its 500e In 2013

11 months ago by Jay Cole 19

2013 Fiat 500e

2013 Fiat 500e

The Fiat 500e is probably the surprise offering of the year.

Chrysler-Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne Not A Big Fan Of EV Technology Being Forced To Market

Chrysler-Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne Not A Big Fan Of EV Technology Being Forced To Market

Especially so since it was given little fanfare by the company  when it was announced – if anything electric vehicles (or rather the business of electric vehicles) have been mostly disparaged by the CEO Sergio Marchionne.

In the same breath as the 500e was announced, the CEO felt it was also good time to say the company “will lose money on every car we make.”

Then added later:

“The economics of EVs simply don’t work. On the 500 that Chrysler will begin selling in the U.S. next year, we will lose over $10,000 per unit despite the retail price being three times higher (than the standard ICE)”

Yet out of that, the end offering was a capable, 87 mile, attractive looking electric compact coupe – offered a good price that filled a need.  Put another way, if you want a $199/month leased EV and don’t want to be perceived as riding around in an entry-level gasser, or mid-size family hauler, this is probably your car.

However, the car is still from Fiat-Chrysler, so despite the industry’s hunger for sales and production information on the vehicle, all we have received is an admission from the CEO that the car is being forced to market for compliance reasons.  Little else.

  • Total production run?  crickets
  • Monthly sales results?  crickets
  • Number of 500e(s) they want to sell for 2013?  crickets

We recently asked Fiat if they would consider breaking out the 500e’s sales results, and received a “meh, maybe later(InsideEV’s sarcastic paraphraser was on for that quote)

Despite Being Tight-Lipped About Production, It Appears Fiatsler Will Sell 491 500e (s) In America in 2013

Despite Being Tight-Lipped About Production, It Appears Fiatsler Will Sell 491 500e (s) In America in 2013

However, only three and a half weeks after the car went on sale in mid-July, a fairly serious half shaft issue popped up on the 500e;  and through that event we learned the company had put out a partial recall on the car that involved the majority of 500e owners – about 270 were notified to return their cars for repairs (which meant bolts that secured the vehicles’ half shaft had to be replaced)

Turns out, some internal attempts at fixing the problem the first time were also not so great, and in a recent revised letter to the NHSTA (images of letter below), Chrysler’s Product Investigations and Campaigns Senior Manager Kristin Kolodge expanded the recall to include the entire production run, which began December 16th, 2012 – and numbered 491 cars.

Currently the Fiat 500e is not in production at Fiat’s assembly facility in Mexico.  So while we might not know exactly how many cars are sold each month, with Fiat saying the car is already a “sell-out,” we can tell you how many will eventually be sold in 2013 – 491

Gallery:  Images of Chrysler letter to NHSTA

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19 responses to "Fiat To Sell 491 Of Its 500e In 2013"

  1. zilm says:

    Jay, where is aug US? pleeeease!

    1. Jay Cole says:

      US plug-in sales you mean?

      Tomorrow…day late because of the holiday

      1. zilm says:

        ohohohh
        how long, i’m waiting since monday :)

        1. Jay Cole says:

          Yupe, its an odd one this month. I’m looking forward to it though – should be the best cumulative effort to date by a good margin

          1. zilm says:

            At least there will be Ford same day :)I hope!

      2. Cavaron says:

        My F5-button is getting battered… :)

  2. Rick says:

    I wonder how much of a “California Premium” Fiat has to charge its ICE buyers to pay for their right to do business in California?

  3. TSLA says:

    all 491 are recalled

  4. drpawansharma says:

    Eagerly waiting for latest cumulative data…..

  5. Perfect. They can recall them all, buy out the owners, crush them all and get full CARB-ZEV credit for the 491 cars for model year 2013, and write off the loss on their taxes.

    Then do an OpEd in the Wall Street Journal about how bad and expensive EVs are.

    1. Mark H says:

      I can take just about anything from the company but that.

    2. Rick Danger says:

      Tony, sounds about right.
      Then, they can take their gassers and GTFO. We survived without Fiat for 30 years and we will survive without them for another 300, I’m sure.

  6. Spec says:

    I think that it is poetic justice that Tesla is now worth more than Sergio Marchionne’s entire Fiat Automotive Group.

    1. David Stone says:

      Well that’s obviously because:
      ““The economics of EVs simply don’t work.” :)

  7. Anyone on the west coast wanting to test drive the Tesla Model S and Fiat 500e side by side and come to their own conclusions will be able to do so in October and November.

    1. Spec says:

      I don’t think you really need to drive them side by side to draw some conclusions. ;-) Although they are both nice cars, it is not really a close call.

    2. David Stone says:

      Yes, they are a similar as two completely dissimilar things – in a pod. ;)

      1. David Stone says:

        (Quote: Blackadder)

  8. Yeah, but it will be fun anyway. Look for news about the West Coast Electric Car Guest Drive in a few days.