Chrysler gain propelled by sedans and coupes
The Dart had its best month since it was reintroduced in June -- 7,154 were sold.
DETROIT -- Chrysler Group rode strong sales of sedans and coupes to a 16 percent sales increase in January, increasing its string of consecutive monthly year-over-year sales gains to 34 months.
Chrysler Group sold 117,731 vehicles last month, compared with 101,149 units in January 2012. Car sales were up 50 percent for the month and accounted for 37 percent of the company’s sales.
The string of monthly sales gains is Chrysler’s longest since a 35-month string that ended in December 1994.
The Dodge Journey set an all-time record in January, while the Dodge Avenger and Challenger, Chrysler 200, Fiat 500 and Jeep Patriot set sales records for January. The Dart had its best month since it was reintroduced in June.
Jeep was the only Chrysler Group brand to lose sales in January. Sales dropped 4 percent thanks to a 70 percent decline in sales of the outgoing Jeep Liberty. Chrysler will introduce the Liberty’s successor at the New York auto show next month.
The Dodge Grand Caravan minivan, down 39 percent to 4,965 units, was the only continuing Chrysler Group vehicle to post a decline in January.
The automaker’s inventory climbed to an 87-day supply, up from a 72-day supply at the end of December. Sixty days is considered normal.
In a conference call earlier this week, before January sales were released, Chrysler Group CEO Sergio Marchionne said the strong start was a good sign for the coming year. He added that the company’s string of monthly sales gains would continue.
“We’re looking at 2013 with some levels of confidence,” Marchionne said. “I hope that we can continue that trend through a large portion of 2013.”