Fiat-Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne may not be a fan of the money-losing Fiat 500e, but the electric minicar is now on sale in Oregon, after a year of being limited to only California. Just don’t expect to see too many of them on the road.
Marchionne claims that each Fiat 500e costs the automaker as much as $14,000, but that hasn’t stopped them from offering the little EV for $31,800, or an excellent 36 month lease price of $199 a month with $999 down (though car dealers can make it hard to find that deal). That’s just about as competitive as it gets these days, and the refreshed 2015 model gets a redesigned center console and a couple of new color options.
Customers have been clamoring for the 500e, which is rated at 87 miles per charge, and many reviewers walked away with the peppiness and impressive road manners of FCA’s only electric vehicle. But the automaker has limited sales to just 2,600 units in California, the bare minimum required to meet clean air regulations.
His stubborn disregard for EVs could ultimately be Marchionne’s downfall, as Fiat-Chrysler only just announced plans for a plug-in hybrid minivan, as well as a line of mild hybrids. Yet only two states are even able to get a taste of what this conjoined company can do in the field of plug-in cars.
It’s a shame Chrysler couldn’t figure out a way to make money on an electric Fiat 500, and now they’re at the back of the pack when it comes to electrification.