Stellantis Lays Off 400+ Engineers in Detroit

I didn’t see any other comments on this here. Stellantis sent a notice at 8:00pm on Thursday, March 21 to all engineers in Detroit stating that Friday would be a mandatory work from home day. On Friday, a conference call was convened during which all of those invited were laid off. Over 400. I’m not sure what fraction of the total number of engineers Stellantis employs in Detroit that represents but I’m guessing a very high percentage.

Sales for Stellantis have tanked across all brands. As of 2/29/2024, dealer inventories across the US total 188,611 vehicles which equate to a staggering 195 days of sales volume. Industry norms are between 40-65.

Stellantis has also been running ads for the Challenger and Charger as they try to unload the last of those gas-powered muscle cars they’ve already discontinued as of December 2023. The last units were made 12/22/2023. One would think muscle car enthusiasts would have scarfed those up by now, given that there may never be another V8 car like that ever made. Apparently not if they’re having to run ads.

Curiously, Stellantis reported it was profitable in all world regions for 2023, earning 20 billion euros. Is the collapse in US sales due to the company announcing its huge shift to BEVs, thus triggering customers to avoid the last ICE-based products that were already struggling against competitors?

Something doesn’t add up here. I can understand layoffs of hundreds of engineers who might only have experience in ICE related disciplines. But I haven’t heard of Stellantis starting a worldwide hunt for BEV based engineering skills or generating a bidding war for talent with Tesla, Ford, Toyota and others who are ahead of them in those technologies. So with sales in the US dropping precipitously, how are they netting a profit? Maybe the maker is sticking the dealers with the cars and capturing its revenue even though the dealers can’t sell the cars at retail.

As one commenter put it…

“You engineers aren’t making us any money so we’re laying you off so we can afford to hire more MBAs to figure out why no one wants to buy a $70,000 Jeep.”



Strabismus honcho Carlos Tavares has a degree in engineering, but his CV at Peugeot is all about cost cutting. All the other brands that he has rolled into Peugeot have become labels pasted on Peugeot products. He probably has the same plan in store for Chrysler, everything engineered by the Peugeot mother ship, rendering all the USians redundant.


Hearing about the big drop in sales and the huge number of unsold cars is worrying. But I think it would be useful to know how these numbers stack up against what’s happening in the rest of the car industry and what’s going on in the economy as a whole.

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Unfortunately, many automakers only report sales quarterly now. One article I saw recently showed how some companies are much more overstocked than others. Another article said what is stacking up on storage lots are the really big, expensive, circus wagons, the ones that some automakers have narrowed their product lines to focus on, because they make more profit on them. Would not be the first time the big three have pushed the envelope on bigger and more expensive, only to have someone come in at the low end and eat their lunch.

This article has the inventory levels charted. The highest are Lincoln, Chrysler, Dodge, Ram, Genesis, Infiniti, and Jeep.

This article lists some wildly overstocked models, some with over 200 days inventory, including the Ford F-150, Jeep Grand Cherokee, and Ram 1500. So much for the “supply side” narrative that all a “JC” needs to do it build something, and people with the means will magically appear to buy every one of them.

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As I recall, last year the auto industry stopped building less expensive cars because building more expensive cars brought higher profit margins.

And the spreadsheets confirmed that conclusion.

Reality bites.

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The Captain

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As a German car mechanic put it to me 20 years ago, Honda and Toyota sell compact cars in larger numbers. An automobile assembly line costs billions of dollars. If the company can not sell x number of units against Toyota and Honda there is no point in competing.

Yes, engineers make a difference…in Japan.

We hire higher-priced MBAs to screw our companies.

The only worker in an American corporation is an MBA. They earned it. Sarcasm.

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Thanks for finding them for me. I had no clue that the Toyota Rav 4 market day supply was that low.

And Stellantis models have the highest!

The Captain

The Charger and Challenger have ended production. Stabismus ran off a flock of “special editions”, no doubt at an extra rich GP, to cash in on the flood of “hurry and buy before they are all gone” people. So, now they are waiting for the flood.