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September from a Chrysler perspective

by Bill Cawthon on

Whether it’s because Chrysler has got some great products or because Chrysler reportedly had the highest average incentives in September, it worked.

Chrysler was the only one of the Detroit automakers to beat analysts’ predictions. Ford was flat and General Motors was nearly so, up just 1.5%.

Chrysler, like all the Detroit automakers, lost market share in September. Chrysler lost 0.14 points of share while Ford and GM lost nearly two points each. In year-to-date terms, Chrysler is the only Detroit automaker with a larger piece of the pie. In fact, Chrysler’s market growth for the first nine months of 2012 is second only to Toyota’s.

The Dodge Grand Caravan is the king of the minivan hill and has a comfortable 10,000-plus sales lead over the second-place Honda Odyssey. The Town & Country is third.

The Ram pickup delivered the largest sales improvement of the American pickups and was No. 5 in sales among all light vehicles in September.

As it has been doing for a while, the Chrysler 300 continues as the best-selling American premium sedan.

The Fiat 500 outsold the Mini Cooper S, the Toyota Yaris and every version of the Scion in September and is just 444 sales behind the Mini for the first nine months of the year.

Rank Brand & Model Sept. Rank Brand & Model CYTD
5 Ram 25,973 8 Ram 213,593
24 Dodge Grand Caravan 13,488 25 Jeep Grand Cherokee 112,075
25 Jeep Grand Cherokee 12,539 27 Jeep Wrangler 108,477
29 Jeep Wrangler 12,097 28 Dodge Grand Caravan 108,127
34 Chrysler Town & Country 10,207 30 Chrysler 200 100,267
37 Chrysler 200 9,881 37 Chrysler Town & Country 87,569
44 Dodge Avenger 8,716 45 Dodge Avenger 74,739
48 Dodge Journey 7,627 54 Jeep Liberty 63,674
58 Dodge Charger 5,863 56 Dodge Charger 63,485
62 Jeep Liberty 5,646 58 Dodge Journey 59,351
64 Jeep Patriot 5,428 63 Chrysler 300 53,630
65 Dodge Dart 5,235 68 Jeep Patriot 49,061
68 Chrysler 300 4,762 87 Dodge Challenger 33,623
81 Fiat 500 4,176 90 Fiat 500 32,742
91 Jeep Compass 3,535 93 Jeep Compass 31,903
95 Dodge Challenger 3,230 96 Dodge Durango 30,052
106 Dodge Durango 2,986 167 Dodge Dart 9,254
214 Ram Cargo Van 433 206 Ram Cargo Van 5,279
Manufacturers reported sales on 299 light vehicle models in September.

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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