Fiat Chrysler has been on a roll lately with a near ridiculous stretch of monthly sales gains. As the company continues to sell more vehicles, it has ramped up production and focused on producing vehicles that are selling like hotcakes: crossovers and trucks. Despite this, or perhaps because of it, FCA has some of the lowest quality ratings in the industry. Consumer Reports recently released a reliability survey and four of the lowest seven slots were occupied by FCA brands.

Dodge may make some badass rides, but if the quality isn't up to snuff, what's the point? 

In addition to Consumer Reports’ reliability study, FCA also received poor marks from a J.D. Power initial quality study for 2016. All of FCA’s brands ranked below the industry average for the number of problems per 100 vehicles (PP100). Although FCA’s brands didn’t fare well in J.D Power’s study, it did note that Chrysler and Jeep, two of FCA’s most prominent brands, made significant improvements in quality since last year’s study. Each of the brands decreased the number of issues by 28 PP100. Still, for a company that’s posting record sales numbers month after month, it’s surprising that the quality is so low.

“ The company really needs to focus on its quality issues or the success it’s experiencing will most likely be short-lived. ”

In the near future, there is little doubt that FCA will be able to continue selling massive numbers of cars. The company is going all in for crossovers and SUVs by suspending all domestic production of cars for the foreseeable future. Despite this move, we feel it’s necessary to point out that the company really needs to focus on its quality issues or the success it’s experiencing will most likely be short-lived. Consumers are only going to put up with so many poor quality cars before they decide it’s smart to look elsewhere.

Jeep Cherokee
Hopefully, Jeep's reputation isn't tarnished by FCA's quality issues. 

Sure, FCA may be able to sell thousands of vehicles for a few years, but if those customers find that their new rides are of poor quality, there’s little chance they’ll come back to FCA for their next vehicle. It seems that FCA is so busy playing the short game that they have almost no regard for long-term strategy and future outlook of the company. It’s widely accepted that today’s car shoppers are some of the most well-educated consumers the auto industry has ever seen. If these shoppers continue to see FCA ranking near the bottom half of the reliability and quality reports or experience it firsthand, they might decide to move on to another automaker.

Fiat 500L
The 500L is a perfect example of Fiat's poor quality. Read our review here.

We get that keeping up with an ever-rising demand for products is no easy task. However, if meeting that demand comes at the cost of quality, we’re not sure it’s worth it in the long run. FCA’s omission of passenger cars from its domestic production seems like a smart move to free up space to meet a growing demand for crossovers and SUVs, but we’d like to see brands like Jeep and RAM – brands known for tough machines – be able to live up to their reputation. The rest of FCA brands have to up their game too. Nobody is expecting Fiat to win reliability and quality awards the next time these studies come out, but some progress in the area of quality could do wonders to make sure FCA’s sales growth continues.