Chrysler Group sales were 37% higher in December 2011

Article by Christian Andrei, on January 4, 2012

Chrysler Group’s sales are higher by 37% in December and are 26% higher for the entire year. Its sales were helped by huge discounts, an updated lineup of cars and light trucks, and a high demand for conventional SUVs like the Jeep Grand Cherokee, Jeep Wrangler and Dodge Durango. Chrysler released a statement that it sold 138,109 cars and light trucks in the U.S. for the month of December, which makes it its best month in terms of volume since May 2008.

Reuters conducted a survey on analysts who said that auto sales in the U.S. are predicted to increase by around 9% in December 2011 compared to the same month the previous year.

A survey by Bloomberg indicated that sales are predicted to reach 13.4 million units for the month on an annualized basis. This would be the fourth straight month that the SAAR was able to surpass 13 million units. Chrysler, which is the first major carmaker to post December sales results – said annual sales rate is expected to reach 14 million for the month.

Volkswagen AG said that VW brand sales increased by 36% in December and 26% for the full year. VW said that these results demonstrate the high demand for the new Passat and Jetta sedans. For the year through November, its U.S. light vehicle sales increased by 10% to 11.5 million units.

Sales are anticipated to total to almost 12.8 million for the year. This is higher than the 11.5 million light vehicles sold in 2010 and the 10.4 million units sold in 2009, which is the lowest figure since 1982. U.S. sales for 2012 are predicted to go up to 13.8 million but this is still lower than the peak of 17.4 million in 2000.

The holiday promotions of the automakers had attracted plenty of buyers. In a report submitted last week, Wells Fargo analyst Richard M. Kwas said that the sales rate is better because Christmas and New Year's Day were timed for the weekend. He said that about half of the December's unit sales had benefited. According to TrueCar.com (an online shopping site), its automakers had used up an average of $2,562 on discounts and incentives for each vehicle last month. However it has fallen by 3% from November and December 2010.

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