Thanks for the warm welcome, seems like my post sparked are debate on principles here
I am already aware of most issues presented here, and to be honest on the pro side of buying a Nitro two things really stand out, for most buyers:
- The looks (it turns even more heads here than in the US)
- The price (maybe not so true for Europe)
Apart from that one must admit that from an engineering point of view the car offers nothing spectacular. Build quality is average, but my testdriver had no rattles or squeaks and if it stays that way I can live with the bland interior.
One issue here in Europe is definately milage, which directly relates to the Nitros high curb weight. That's why the only option is the Diesel-Nitro, which gives around 22-23 mpg in real world mixed driving.
Unfortunately the Diesel-Nitros are not that cheap (almost 50.000US$ including taxes for the mid-range SXT in Germany) and cars like the Opel Antara (2008 Saturn Vue in the US) offer better handling, a nicer interior and better gas milage. When I look at US-pricing right now, especially with the US$ beeing that weak, Chrysler could really push sales in Europe by lowering prices.
What I am going to do is this: As with most US-Cars (say: Caliber) Chrysler is having a hard time selling cars in Germany, since most people will not even consider cars from the US. So, prices of used cars or cars on the dealer lot usually drop significantly during the first 6-12 months. I'll just wait for that to happen and then I'll make my move, I guess.