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FCA US, CA monthly sales down; moving to quarterly reports

by David Zatz on

FCA US and FCA Canada have given out their last monthly sales reports; after this, only quarterly reports will be issued, starting in June. FCA is the last of the major North American automakers to switch to quarterly sales reports, which balance out month-to-month fluctuations.

April 2019 U.S. sales were 172,900, down from 184,149 in April 2018.  129,382 vehicles were sold at resale; fleet sales were 25% of the total sales this month, and 27% year-to-date, a fairly high number. While April sales fell, they were roughly in line with 2016-18 Aprils.

There was good news with April-record sales of the Compass and Grand Cherokee, and the fourth consecutive monthly sales record for Ram. The profitable brand scored a 25% gain over last April, to 53,811 (49,106 of which were pickups and chassis/cabs).

Sales chief Reid Bigland said that over 300 Jeep Gladiators have already been sold; 4,190 orders were taken in April for the pricey Gladiator Launch Edition.

Jeep Gladiator at New York Auto Show

It was a rough month for the Wrangler and Renegade; both dropped by around a quarter of their April 2018 sales, despite having new generations out. For the year, the Wrangler is down 15% and Renegade is down 26%. (Some fall in Renegade sales is natural with the new Compass out.)

Ram was almost all good news; ProMaster leaped up by 35% though City fell by 10%. Chrysler, though, actually kept pace with Fiat, when it comes to falling sales; the brand as a whole fell by 37%, with 300 sales collapsing to half their April 2018 level (just 1,998) and Pacifica sales falling by 31%. Over at Fiat, it was another huge drop, with all brands down (the 500L and X were particularly hard-hit) and a 34% overall fall.

Dodge wasn’t much of a consolation; though the profitable Durango rose by 25%, ye olde Journey and Caravan fell by 39% and 37%, the Challenger dropped by a quarter, and of course there weren’t a lot of old Darts to sell (two, versus 26 last April). Dodge’s spiritual Italian twin also did poorly, with Alfa Romeo Giulia sales falling by 34%; a slight (five-car) gain in 4C sales and a 16% (109-car) gain in Stelvio sales weren’t enough to stop the new brand from slipping by 14%.

For the year, FCA US is down by 4% from last year, with Jeep down 7% despite new product; Chrysler down 33%; Dodge down 10%; Fiat down 42%, and Alfa Romeo down 235. The only major bright spot was Ram, up by a stunning 22%, thanks partly to an “old Ram/new Ram” strategy.

At FCA Canada, sales were down by 10%, though the Durango set an all-time monthly record. Hardest hit were the 300 and Pacifica (both down by 70%), Charger (80%), Renegade (73%), and Fiat (down 52%, to just 34 sales across four models for the month). Alfa Romeo took a 47% hit, with Giulia and Stelvio each dropping  to roughly half of April 2018 sales. Dodge was down 39% with Durango more than doubling last April’s 543 sales but every other model down—the Caravan’s 56% drop hurt most, as the company’s perennial second-best seller.

In Canada, Jeep as a whole rose by 2% on Grand Cherokee and Wrangler gains, and Ram had a fine month with a 31% overall gain; each series (pickups/chassis cabs, small vans, and big vans) had a steep gain.

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