Fiat Chrysler sources allegedly uncover inflated sales reporting

If Automotive News' sources turn out to be telling the truth, it could spell trouble for the company, which is currently under SEC scrutiny.

Bill Pugliano, Getty Images
FCA US Headquarters
Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

Earlier in July, the SEC decided to investigate Fiat Chrysler Automobiles after a January 2016 lawsuit alleged that the automaker was fudging its sales numbers. FCA dismissed the allegations, but a new report throws that into question, as it appears FCA may have known about these practices already.

According to insider sources, a 2015 internal review found thousands of misreported vehicle sales, Automotive News reports. The number fudging was stopped after said review, the sources say, but it still happened for a spell, which means FCA's sales numbers might be higher than the truth suggests.

The sources go on to explain that pressure to continually best its own sales figures prompted the misreporting, wherein vehicles that were marked as sold were not, in fact, sold to anyone. This malfeasance allegedly involves 5,000 to 6,000 vehicles. FCA's monthly year-over-year sales streak spans over six years. Those aggressive sales tactics have led to some serious employee turnover, AN reports.

Fiat Chrysler declined to comment to both Roadshow and Automotive News. The company is currently under SEC investigation for its sales reporting, after a dealer group in Illinois claimed that the automaker offered cash to dealers in exchange for manipulating sales figures. FCA called the claims "baseless," and it has said it's cooperating with the feds since the inquiry began.

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