DETROIT -- Chrysler Group is slashing prices on a pair of mid-sized sedans and the Dodge Journey crossover for the 2012 model year.
The 2012 Chrysler 200 and the 2012 Dodge Avenger will start at $19,745, including delivery. The 2011 models start at $19,995.
The 2012 Journey, meanwhile, will have its price drop to $21,795, including an $800 destination charge for most trims. The 2011 Journey starts at $22,995.
The price cuts come as most automakers are raising prices to counter higher commodity and material costs. General Motors, for example, says it will hike prices on 2012 models by an average of 1 percent.
Competition in the mid-sized sedan market is expected to intensify during the 2012 model year with the introduction of an all-new Toyota Camry and Volkswagen Passat. A redesigned Chevrolet Malibu is also expected to go on sale in the first quarter of 2012, followed by a new Honda Accord next spring.
The 2012 Dodge models are scheduled to go on sale during the third quarter, and the 2012 Chrysler 200 will go on sale in September.
The new base price on the Avenger and 200 make them cheaper than several competing vehicles, including the 2012 Chevrolet Malibu, which starts at $22,755; the 2012 Ford Fusion, which starts at $20,645; and the 2011 Toyota Camry, which starts at $20,955. All prices include delivery.
The Journey also leads its class in price, with a lower base sticker than the $30,240 2012 Chevrolet Traverse and the $28,900 2012 Toyota Highlander. The prices include delivery.
Sales of the 200 – which replaced the Sebring – have totaled 38,980 this year through July. Avenger sales are up 6 percent to 34,099 units. And demand for the Journey has climbed 3 percent to 31,285.