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Chrysler sales up 44% in January

by Bill Cawthon on

Chrysler reported U.S. sales of 101,149, a 44% increase over sales in January 2011 (70,118 units), blowing past analyst predictions of a 32 percent improvement. It was the 22nd consecutive month of gains and eighth consecutive month of sales increases of at least 20%. All four brands posted sales gains, led by the Chrysler brand’s hardy 81% increase.

Chrysler Group has beaten the industry average sales increase for each of the last 11 months.

The January rise was driven in large part by strong sales of its sedans. Sales of the Chrysler 200 were up eight-fold in January, nearly a year after appearing in the “Imported from Detroit” Super Bowl commercial. Chrysler 300 sales were up 273% in January, the sedan’s third-consecutive month with a year-over-year sales gain in the triple digits.

Overall, nearly every model still in production showed sales rises, the one exception being the Town & Country.

Chrysler Brand: The largest percentage increase of any Chrysler Group brand, the fourth consecutive month that the brand has posted the largest sale gain within the group, and the seventh consecutive month of sales gains. The increase was driven by the Chrysler 200’s jump of 789% and the Chrysler 300’s 273% sales gain. The 200’s increase was by far the largest of any Chrysler Group model in January. The only shortfall was in the Town & Country minivan, which dropped 14% (around 800 vans). Caravan’s 4% sales rise (280 units or so) did not compensate for that.

Jeep®: Sales increased 37% in January. All five Jeeps posted double-digit percentage sales gains in January, led by the Jeep Liberty’s 68% increase. January marked the brand’s 21st consecutive month of year-over-year sales gains. The Grand Cherokee logged its best January sales in six years with a 40% increase.

Ram: Sales were up 42% in January; best January since 2008. The Ram pickup truck sales increased 47%, the 21st consecutive month of year-over-year sales gains.

Dodge: A 29% sales increase in January, the eighth consecutive month of year-over-year sales gains. Durango, Charger, and Avenger each logged triple-digit percentage gains in January.

Model Jan-12 Jan-11 Change
200 7,007 788 789.2%
Sebring 0 694 -100.0%
300 4,960 1,329 273.2%
PT Cruiser 0 342 -100.0%
Town & Country 5,637 6,552 -14.0%
CHRYSLER BRAND 17,604 9,705 81.4%
Compass 2,340 1,423 64.4%
Patriot 3,966 3,452 14.9%
Wrangler 7,896 6,444 22.5%
Liberty 6,825 4,052 68.4%
Grand Cherokee 10,683 7,612 40.3%
Commander 0 96 -100.0%
JEEP BRAND 31,710 23,079 37.4%
Caliber 1,149 2,412 -52.4%
Avenger 5,697 2,317 145.9%
Charger 5,537 2,062 168.5%
Challenger 2,551 2,526 1.0%
Viper 20 62 -67.7%
Journey 4,226 3,973 6.4%
Caravan 8,094 7,813 3.6%
Nitro 1,159 1,950 -40.6%
Durango 3,021 1,199 152.0%
DODGE  BRAND 31,454 24,314 29.4%
Dakota 155 823 -81.2%
Ram P/U 17,909 12,197 46.8%
Cargo Van 406 0 New
RAM BRAND 18,470 13,020 41.9%
FIAT 500 1,911 0 New
TOTAL CHRYSLER GROUP LLC 101,149 70,118 44.3%
Total Car 28,832 12,190 136.5%
Total Truck 72,317 57,928 24.8%

Bill Cawthon grew up in the auto industry in the 1950s. His Dad worked for Chrysler and Bill spent a number of Saturdays down on the plant floor at Dodge Main in Hamtramck. Bill is also the U.S. market correspondent for, a British auto industry publication, and a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association, which has named the Jeep Grand Cherokee the “SUV of Texas” several times and named the Ram 1500 as the “Truck of Texas” two years running.

Bill has owned five Plymouths (including the only 1962 “Texan”), one Dodge and one Chrysler and is still trying to figure out how to justify a Wrangler. He also has owned at least one of every 1:87 scale model of a Chrysler product. You can reach him directly at (206) 888-7324 or by using the form.

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