Chrysler U.S. sales rose year-over-year again in February, but only by 4%, breaking an extraordinarily long streak of double-digit sales increases. Total sales were Chrysler’s best since 2008, at 133,521 vehicles. Dodge posted a 30% gain.
Chrysler’s results were in line with analyst estimates of about 4.4%.
Jeep sales did not increase, largely due to the end of Jeep Liberty production in mid-2012, and shortages due to the launch of a new Grand Cherokee and Compass. Factoring out the Liberty, Jeep sales would have been down just 1% and total Chrysler Group sales would have improved a much more healthy 9%. Sergio Marchionne said that March 2013 volumes may be lower than March 2012 due to launches of these vehicles and Ram Heavy Duty.
Eight vehicles set records in February, including the Dodge Dart, which rose 8% over January; the Dodge Challenger, with a 34% gain; and the Avenger, Journey, Patriot, Wrangler, 200, and 500 all set February records.
Ram pickup truck sales increased 3%; it was Chrysler’s top-selling vehicle in February, followed by the Chrysler 200 and the Dodge Grand Caravan. Chrysler Group finished the month with a 71 days of inventory (413,989 units).
Dodge posted its 21st-consecutive month of year-over-year sales gains with a 30% hike. The Challenger has been on a torrid sales pace for the last 13 months, setting nine sales records, including three all-time sales records, during that period.
Sales of the Light Duty Ram pickup increased 2% while Heavy Duty Ram sales were up 14%. The Ram 1500 diesel is due in the third quarter of 2013.
Chrysler brand sales were up 21% over January but fell 7% compared to the same month a year ago, despite strong gains with the Chrysler 200.
|February 2013 – Model||Feb 2013||Feb 2012||% Chg||2013 YTD||2012 YTD||Change|
|Town & Country||8,614||9,621||-10%||15,139||15,258||-1%|
|TOTAL CHRYSLER GROUP LLC||139,015||133,521||4%||256,746||234,670||9%|
With the supercharged 6.2 Hemi delivering 707 horsepower to the Dodge Charger and Challenger, the Viper boys are reportedly looking for ways to get back on top. While the Viper may be superior on a tight racing course, the straight-line performance of Charger and Challenger, in five-seaters with all the amenities, large trunks, and automatic or manual transmissions, is a challenge for Team Viper — as is the current series of Corvettes....
It has been years since Allpar first reported on the future launch of a new Jeep Wagoneer, and the dropping of the Dodge Caravan. With Wagoneer on the books, Chrysler planners may have had mixed feelings about the sudden success of the Dodge Durango....
Dodge and SRT are rejoining the Trans Am Series, with Miller Racing fielding two new Dodge Challengers at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on August 15 and 16. Driving will be four-time series champion Tommy Kendall, making his first Trans Am start since 2004 in the TA2 series class....
Though the Ram 1500 just had major upgrades, another refresh is due in 2017, to deal with the new F-150s and a possible Chevrolet Silverado update. So far not much is known about these trucks, except that they will likely include the Pentastar engine upgrade, might include the rumored 5.7 Hemi V8 upgrade, and are likely to have undergone weight reduction therapy with more high-strength steel and aluminum....
Artist suzq044 has provided an alternative view of what the 2017 Ram may look like. This refresh will counter new F-150s. The trucks will almost certainly include the V6 engine upgrade, might include the rumored 5.7 Hemi V8 upgrade, and are likely to have more high-strength steel and aluminum to cut weight....