TO THE EDITOR:
The problem with Mini and Fiat is not a matter of bad product — it's a matter of where they are being sold. The Mini is one of the best city cars of all time, so shouldn't it be sold in downtown areas?
With the switch to electrification, an electric Mini or a hybrid Countryman makes a great vehicle for city residents. They are roomy and easy to park and use little or no gasoline. Electrics also have very little maintenance. They are the perfect city car. So why are they sold in the suburbs?
If there were showrooms in downtown areas, or even in the bottom of parking garages, they would appeal to the customers they are aimed at. The suburban palaces off the highway could be kept for major inventory and repair; the city locations would be for orders and sales, with a small staff. If Mini made deals with garage owners to put in charging stations, it would encourage owners to shop around.
Fiat should do the same thing. The electric and hybrid Fiat 500 should come back to the States, even if just to up Stellantis' corporate average fuel economy ratings.
Stellantis has a passel of electrified vehicles in Europe that would be great here.
CHARLES WININGHAM, Alton, Ill., The writer is an archivist for Lambda Car Club International's newsletter, Driveshaft.