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Jeep, Ram lead familiar (happy) tune for Fiat Chrysler

Jeep's U.S. sales climbed 23 percent as each vehicle in the lineup except the Grand Cherokee recorded its best-ever sales for January. Photo credit: DAVID PHILLIPS

DETROIT -- Fiat Chrysler continued to ride strong U.S. demand for its SUVs and pickups in January, increasing sales 14 percent from a year earlier and extending its streak of monthly gains to 58.

FCA US reported sales of 145,007 vehicles last month, with all of its brands advancing. Ten vehicles set January sales records.

Jeep sales climbed 23 percent as each vehicle in the lineup except the Grand Cherokee recorded its best-ever sales for January. Sales of the midsize Cherokee topped the Wrangler and Grand Cherokee for the fifth consecutive month.

Ram sales rose 21 percent, thanks largely to demand for the Ram 1500 pickup, up 17 percent. Sales of the full-size ProMaster van more than doubled from the previous year, while the brand also recorded its first sales of the smaller ProMaster City.

Chrysler climbed 11 percent in the month as the Chrysler 200 set a January sales record and offset a 14 percent drop in sales of the Town & Country minivan.

Dodge and Fiat scratched out 1 percent gains last month, with the Dodge Challenger, Dodge Dart and Fiat 500L setting records for January sales. The automaker also recorded 97 sales of the Alfa Romeo 4C in its third month on the U.S. market.

FCA US said it had 563,575 unsold vehicles in inventory, a 101-day supply.

Notably, the company reported a 210-day supply of available Dodge Grand Caravans, a 154-day supply of Chrysler Town & Countrys and a 25-day supply of the Ram Cargo van. All three vehicles are assembled at Fiat Chrysler’s Windsor Assembly plant in Ontario, which will shut down for an estimated three months in mid-February to prepare for a changeover to its next-generation minivan.

You can reach Larry P. Vellequette at lvellequette@autonews.com -- Follow Larry P. on Twitter: https://twitter.com/LarryVellequett

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