DETROIT -- The Chrysler group will launch Dodge in Europe this year with a major boost from S-E-X, says Joe Eberhardt, the company's marketing chief.
Dodge, which has a reputation for in-your-face marketing in the United States, will use a nontraditional approach in Europe, too, Eberhardt told the Automotive News World Congress.
For example, Dodge will use six e-mail messages to attract young Europeans to the Dodge Caliber, Eberhardt said. The e-mail ads, which feature twenty-somethings tattooed with the Dodge logo, are laden with sexual innuendo.
"Befitting a brand that appeals to people who live on adrenaline, our marketing approach definitely will include some bold, nontraditional elements," Eberhardt said.
Chrysler will market its vehicles in Europe "as distinctly American products that embrace a consistent brand image from market to market," he said.
"Why would a European want to buy a European-wannabe car when he or she can already get the real thing?" he asked.
The Dodge Viper SRT-10 already is sold in Europe. But Dodge will expand its volume and entries in Europe in 2006. The Dodge Caliber hatchback and Dodge Nitro SUV go on sale in the first half, and a large sedan will follow, he said.
Chrysler needs more international sales to buttress its strategy of profitable growth, Eberhardt said.
Chrysler will "more than double" its model offerings outside North America to "at least 18 between 2003 and 2007," Eberhardt said. "That includes in excess of a dozen diesel-powered models and at least eight right-hand-drive offerings."
For example, Caliber will be available in either left- or right-hand drive and will offer a 2.0-liter turbodiesel outside North America. There are no plans to produce a diesel Caliber in the United States.
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