We confess we like listening to earnings calls because there are always product tidbits sprinkled among the numbers.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ third-quarter earnings call did not disappoint, and chief executive officer Mike Manley confirmed an electric Ram pickup is in the works.
“There will be a Ram electric pickup in the marketplace, and I would just ask you to stay tuned for a little while, and I will tell you exactly when that will be,” he said.
There is some urgency given the importance of the Ram brand to the automaker and the onslaught of electric trucks on the way in the next two years. General Motors has the 2022 GMC Hummer EV electric pickup coming next year, Ford plans to bring an electric F-150 to market by mid-2022, and Rivian hopes to have salable versions of the R1T rolling off the line in June 2021. Tesla also has its Cybertruck in the works, although it keeps being delayed.
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Rise of the Three-Row Jeeps
Manley had more concrete timelines for some upcoming Jeeps. “All three major Jeep launches for 2021 remain on track,” he shared.
First to go into production is a new three-row Jeep SUV that will be built at the new Detroit Assembly Complex in the first half of 2021. The new plant will also make the next-generation Jeep Grand Cherokee.
The Warren Truck plant, meanwhile, was down for 14 weeks to retool for the Wagoneer/Grand Wagoneer family that will launch in the summer of 2021. The truck plant, which also makes the Ram 1500 Classic, is back up and running.
Manley also confirmed FCA’s planned merger with PSA, which will lead to the creation of a new company that goes by the name Stellantis, remains on track. The deal should close by the end of the first quarter of 2021. Manley said the synergies between the two corporations will save almost $6 billion a year by the fourth year of the merger—greater savings than originally projected.
Overall, FCA posted a record third quarter with on the strength of Ram and Jeep sales. Pre-tax earnings in North America hit a record of $2.9 billion with a 13.8 percent profit margin.
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