Sergio MarchionneEnlarge Photo
The question of electric cars and their profitability remains a major factor as automakers and brands move to electrify vehicle portfolios.
While many automakers commit to an all-electric future through various sources of electrification, one remains skeptical of the business model: Fiat-Chrysler Automobiles.
In fact, FCA's CEO Sergio Marchionne, dumped cold water on electric cars' viability—cars many consider the answer to rising emissions and curbing climate change.
Speaking to reporters on Monday, the FCA executive said there is no viable economic model for electric cars and used Tesla as an example.
"We still don't have a viable economic model for delivering an electric car," Marchionne said.
Despite a shift to electric cars, Marchionne believes the business model isn't ready to support widespread adoption, according to The Street.
2017 Fiat 500e
2017 Fiat 500eEnlarge Photo
FCA's current vehicle portfolio reflects the CEO's beliefs; Ram and Jeep prop up FCA with sales of SUVs and trucks, of which none are electrified.
The Chrysler Pacifica Plug-In Hybrid is the automaker's sole product sold nationwide to feature some sort of electrification.
Although FCA sells the Fiat 500e electric car, it's exclusive to California to meet the state's electric-car regulations.
Marchionne famously urged consumers to not buy the electric car and said FCA loses thousands of dollars on each one sold.
Strangely enough, the 500e is the fastest-selling used car in America.
Pointing to Tesla, arguably the most successful automaker to put drivers in electric cars, Marchionne said the business model simply isn't feasible.
2018 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid
2018 Chrysler Pacifica HybridEnlarge Photo
"As much as I like Elon Musk, and he's a good friend and actually he's done a phenomenal job of marketing Telsa, I remain unconvinced of a ... economic viability of the model that he's pitching."
Until the cost of batteries and technologies associated with electric cars drops, the CEO believes electric cars are not the industry's answer.
However, with Europe's reassessment of diesel-powered cars, Marchionne will likely embrace the inevitable; the automaker will not be able to rely on diesel cars to meet corporate average fuel-economy requirements.
FCA plans to electrify more cars as it renews its vehicle lineup in coming years.
The automaker plans for additional electrified cars for 2019 or later, and Maserati will likely lead the charge.