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Chrysler January U.S. Sales Rises 16% On Strong Dodge Journey, Avenger Sales

Automaker Chrysler Group LLC reported Friday a 16 percent increase in total U.S. sales for the month of January, marking the 34th-consecutive month of year-over-year sales gains, reflecting sales growth at four of its five brands. The month also recorded the best January sales since 2008.

"It's been a good week for the Chrysler Group. On Wednesday we announced full year 2012 profits of $1.7 billion and followed that today with our January sales, up 16 percent, marking our 34th-consecutive month of year-over-year sales growth," said Reid Bigland, Head of U.S. Sales.

Separately, the other two of Detroit's big three, General Motors Co. (GM) has reported a 16 percent rise in U.S. sales, and Ford Motor Co. (F) has reported a 22 percent increase in U.S. sales for the month of January.

Chrysler, which was once part of German automotive company Daimler AG, emerged from Chapter 11 reorganization in June 2009 and was bought by Italian automaker Fiat S.p.A. (FIATY) in a U.S. government-brokered deal.

The Auburn Hills, Michigan-based company reported total U.S. sales of 117,731 units, up 16 percent from 101,149 units in sold in January 2012.

The sales growth was attributable to a 94 percent sales gain for Dodge Journey full-size crossover, an 89 percent increase for Dodge Avenger sedan, and a 31 percent sales gain for Fiat 500.

Total car sales for the month of January increased 50 percent to 43,377 units, and total truck sales rose 3 percent to 74,354 units from the same period last year.

The company noted that Chrysler, Dodge, Ram Truck and FIAT brands each posted year-over-year sales gains in January compared with the same month last year.

The Dodge brand of vehicles led the sales increase with a 37 percent growth, followed by Fiat brand with a 31 percent growth, Chrysler brand with an 18 percent increase, and Ram Truck brand with a 14 percent rise, while Jeep brand sales was down 4 percent.

Looking ahead, Biglan added, "Entering 2013 our product portfolio has never been stronger with our new Ram truck picking up both the 2013 Motor Trend and the North American 'Truck of the Year' awards, and the introduction of our new 30 mpg highway Jeep® Grand Cherokee equipped with our new EcoDiesel engine."

In Friday's regular trading session, FIATY is currently trading at $6.15, up $0.04 or 0.65% on a volume of 6,200 shares.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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