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Fiat Chrysler plans to kill off Chrysler 200 and Dodge Dart...for now

The cars' respective plants will be retooled as the company projects a permanent growth in demand for higher-profit-margin trucks and crossovers.

One of the most loathed models on the road transforms into one of the most promising new models at the Detroit auto show. Learn more about the 2015 Chrysler 200.
Antuan Goodwin/CNET

As part of a call to discuss the company's future, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles mentioned that it would phase out the compact Dodge Dart and the mid-size Chrysler 200.

The company will instead focus on more profitable trucks and crossovers to meet current market demand, which Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) believes will be a permanent shift in buying tastes.

There is currently no timeline for when the 200 and Dart will go the way of the dodo bird, but there's also no guarantee that the cars will disappear for good, either. Reuters reported that FCA will seek partners to develop future compact and mid-size sedans, and our weirdly-close friends at Autoblog pointed out that production for both these cars was headed yonder Mexico way in the near future.

As for what the automaker will do with its Sterling Heights, Michigan and Belvidere, Illinois plants, they'll be retooled to increase crossover SUV and light-truck production. Market demand is high for these vehicles in the wake of some very cheap gas, and the profit margins are higher, as well. It's a win-win for FCA in that regard.

Both the Dart and 200 failed to meet sales expectations, with the former receiving low quality marks from Consumer Reports and the latter receiving criticism from FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne himself.

An email from Chrysler spokeswoman Kathy Graham told us via email that "the information stands on its own," and said that no additional details are available at the moment.