Larry P. Vellequette

Fiat Chrysler reporter
Address: 1155 Gratiot Ave.
48207 Detroit, Mich.
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Phone: 313-446-0478
E-Mail: lvellequette@crain.com
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Recent authored articles

FCA tweaks trims on 3 sagging vehicles

The changes come as FCA seeks to keep consumers interested in what is the oldest product lineup of any major automaker.

Dodge Grand Caravan output idled to meet U.S. airbag safety rule

UPDATED: 6/22/17 9:05 pm ET -- corrected

Dodge Grand Caravan output will continue this fall -- but not for US customers, according to a union official at the Canada plant where Fiat Chrysler builds the minivan.

Dodge Grand Caravan output to U.S. idled to meet new airbag safety rule

Dodge Grand Caravan output will continue this fall -- but not for United States customers, according to a union official at the Canada plant where Fiat Chrysler builds the minivan, as the company races to meet a new airbag...

300 Dodge Demons headed to Canadian dealers; distribution plan coming

Three hundred 840-hp Dodge Challenger SRT Demons are headed to Canadian dealerships, but Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Canada hasn't yet said how they will be allocated.

Dodge Demon allocation method to fight dealer mark-ups

Dodge, as it prepares to allocate 3,000 of its 840-hp Challenger SRT Demons, is determined not to repeat bad dealer behavior that marred the 2014 launch of the Hellcats.

FCA to dealers: Stock up on Grand Caravans

UPDATED: 6/22/17 9:02 pm ET -- corrected

FCA told dealers this month to stock up on the Dodge Grand Caravan because production will go on a hiatus in mid-August and won't resume until December.

Ontario production of Grand Caravan to take 4-month break starting in mid-August

Fiat Chrysler told its U.S. dealers this month to stock up on the Dodge Grand Caravan because production of the minivan in Ontario will go on a hiatus in mid-August and won't resume until December.

VW Credit creates new chief digital officer post

Banking veteran Charles Moore will join VW Credit as senior vice president of marketing and chief digital officer July 5.

Audi plots crossover alternatives

Some traditional Audi sedan buyers aren't ready for crossovers, which is one reason the luxury brand is offering its new A5 and S5 Sportback models.

Audi's goal: More SUVs and wagons for U.S.

Barry Hoch, director of product planning for Audi of America, said the lineup could use "an even bigger" SUV.

VW of America lands Hyundai's Hatami for top sales, marketing job

Volkswagen of America has named former Hyundai executive Derrick Hatami -- who abruptly departed Hyundai Motor America this week -- as its new head of U.S. sales and marketing.

VW tweaks 1 engine for 2 purposes

VW's EA888 engine will be tuned to offer fuel economy in some versions, horsepower in others.

Can R2-D2 change oil?

Robots are common in car plants, but they're slow to arrive in dealer service bays.

Automation is coming, but can R2-D2 change oil?

Robots are common in car plants, but they're slow to arrive in dealer service bays.

In a future with robotics, who foots the bill?

Would robots in service be considered a tool to help techs do their jobs, like a good set of wrenches — and thus the financial responsibility of the tech — or a piece of dealership-owned capital equipment, such...

VW to keep old Tiguans with new ones

VW will rip a page out of Nissan’s playbook when it launches a redesigned, larger Tiguan this summer by keeping the current compact crossover around as a value play under a slightly modified name.

Audi's retooled A7 erupts in flames during Alps testing

Audi engineers in Europe were pulling a dead weight trailer in the thin air and steep climbs of the Austrian Alps with a new A7 sedan when a fire started under the hood.

VW-AUDI: Atlas, repaired diesels provide boost ​

Volkswagen Group of America's sales rose 3.9 percent in May, paced by gains of 4.3 percent for VW brand and 2.5 percent for Audi.

FCA: 9th straight decline as Jeep struggles

FCA's May sales fell 0.9 percent as Jeep slid, but Ram topped Chevy's Silverado for the third straight month.

Embattled FCA denies it cheated on diesel testing

The government's civil suit over diesel compliance could cost cash-poor FCA more than $1 billion.

Montreal's Ralph Gilles: FCA's design chief and all around cool guy

There's no disputing it — Montreal's Ralph Gilles is one of the coolest guys in the auto industry, writes Larry P. Vellequette.

FCA's Ralph Gilles: Unleashing the 'inner racer'

There's no disputing it -- Ralph Gilles is one of the coolest guys in the auto industry. But when does Fiat Chrysler Auto-mobiles' global head of design achieve peak cool?

Jeep Wrangler-based pickup spotted roaming on public roads in Michigan

Spy photographers have captured the first public images of Fiat Chrysler's upcoming midsize pickup based on the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited.

Major interior upgrade signaled for 2018 Wrangler

The exterior of the redesigned 2018 Jeep Wrangler won't change much, but the cabin will get a major upgrade, spy photographs indicate.

To grow globally, Jeep turned to driveline maker GKN

The redesigned 2017 Compass is the key to Jeep's strategy to grow its global sales. And the key to the Compass is an innovative driveline system developed by GKN.

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