New Leaders in the Auto Industry?

Things change fast in the U.S. Auto Industry as it looks like it’s now Chrysler, Hyundai-Kia , Toyota and VW’s time to shine in 2012. GM and Ford are down in share for the year but they both have some strong product coming out that could put them back in the black when it comes to market share.

From the Detroit News:

General Motors Co.’s sales in the U.S. were down 8.2 percent for April as Ford Motor Co. reported last month’s U.S. sales were down, too, by 5 percent. Meanwhile, Chrysler Group LLC said Tuesday its sales were up 20 percent last month, making for its best April in four years.

GM sales were down to 213,387 primarily due to a 25 percent drop in fleet sales that the automaker said was because of the timing of rental customer deliveries. The company said its retail sales were essentially flat. GM also pointed out that April 2012 had three fewer selling days than the same month a year ago — only the second time that has occurred in the past 10 years.

GMC posted a sales increase of 4.5 percent during the month, driven by a 20 percent increase in sales of the GMC Sierra pickup and a 9 percent jump for the GMC Terrain crossover. Chevrolet, Buick and Cadillac all saw total sales fall during April compared to the same month a year earlier.

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Chrysler is back and in a big way!

Make no mistake about it my friends as Chrysler are back in the black in a big way! Give Sergio and his team credit for bringing Chrysler back from the brink with still plenty of new product on the way to continue to drive this turnaround story.

DETROIT — Chrysler Group said its first-quarter net income quadrupled on surging sales as the automaker set a profit target of $1.5 billion for the year.

Chrysler earned $473 million in the January-March period, up from $116 million a year earlier. Revenue rose 25 percent to $16.4 billion as U.S. vehicle sales increased 39 percent, the company said in a statement today.

“It’s fair to say that Chrysler is firing on all cylinders,” Chrysler-Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne said. “It’s been a great quarter, and I think that the indications for the remainder of the year are absolutely positive.”

The 2012 target of $1.5 billion in net income would far outpace the $183 million earned last year as Chrysler posted its first annual profit since its 2009 bankruptcy.

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November Car Sales Kick into Gear!

Car sales picked up the pace in November but will it last? The annual rate of 13.8 million sales we might have turned the corner to better days ahead. Chrysler was up a staggering 45 percent and that isn’t a misprint.

From the Detroit News:

November shaped up to be a strong month for U.S. auto sales with all major automakers except Honda Motor Co. reporting better results than a year ago.

Honda’s sales of 83,925 were down 6 percent from a year ago, largely on inventory woes due to flooding in Thailand.

Chrysler Group LLC reported a whopping 45 percent sales increase in November in the first results of what is expected to be one of strongest months of the year for U.S. vehicle sales.

Conversely, General Motors Co. only saw sales grow 7 percent compared with a year ago.

Ford Motor Co. sits in the middle with total sales of 166,865, up 13 percent from 2010 results.

Toyota Motor Corp. said its sales were up 6.7 percent in November on volume of 137,960 units.

Chrysler, the biggest gainer for the month, sold 107,172 vehicles in November, the automaker’s sixth consecutive month of best year-over-year sales this year.

“With sales up 45 percent, November was another huge month for the Chrysler Group and our highest year-over-year sales gain of 2011,” said Reid Bigland, head of U.S. sales.

Strong sellers for the Auburn Hills automaker included the Chrysler 300 and 200 sedans, which contributed to the Chrysler brand’s 92 percent hike over last year and best November since 2008. Also boosting sales were the Dodge Charger, Avenger and Durango. The Fiat 500 notched 1,618 sales for the month.

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October Sales Results: Chrysler and VW Post Big Gains

Although the economy continues to lurch toward recovery at a snail’s pace, some automakers are defying expectations, and posting big gains on the sale charts. For the month of October, the big winners were Chrysler and Volkswagen. Chrysler sold 21,244 cars last month, a 28% increase when compared to October of 2010. High demand for the recently revised 200 and 300 sedans and high incentives helped bring traffic to the showrooms.

Volkswagen was another winner. They sold 28,028 cars last month, a 40% increase from October of last year. Volkswagen points to strong sales of their recently redesigned Passat sedan as the reason for drawing more sales. The good news is not expected to stop as November starts either.

Many automakers and analysts expected strong October sales, and are claiming high sales to continue through November. Although the economy is still a blight on auto sales, analysts expect outside variables to drive sales forward. First, they claim there is a lot of pent up demand for new vehicles since the age of the average car in this country is 11 years old. Secondly, inventory levels are returning to pre-quake levels for the Japanese manufacturers. Finally, a combination of high used car prices and incentives on new car purchases may sway consumers to purchase new cars instead of used ones. The fourth quarter of this year for automakers is shaping up to be much better than expected.

Source: Automotive News

  

At Chrysler – Sergio can say ” I did it my way”

Behind the scenes look at how Chrysler broke away from government control.

From AutoNews.com:

NEW YORK – On the morning of May 24, an upbeat Sergio Marchionne was combing his music library to compile a playlist for an employee event that afternoon at Chrysler Group LLC’s headquarters.

As the chief executive settled on Bruce Springsteen’s version of “Eyes on the Prize,” he received a phone call with long-awaited news: Chrysler finally repaid $7.6 billion of bailout loans from the U.S. and Canadian governments.

That day marked a new chapter in the comeback of the smallest of Detroit’s three automakers, the one the Obama administration wasn’t sure was worth saving back in 2009.

It was the Italian businessman’s deep involvement in Chrysler, and Fiat SpA’s willingness to put in $1.27 billion, that helped the company pull off one of the largest debt deals since the financial crisis — winning the backing of some of the same banks that were wiped out in its bankruptcy.

Investors who looked at the deal were initially skeptical about the large size of the financing as Chrysler still had to address concerns over its vehicle lineup and financial outlook, people involved in the process said. There were also questions over whether the company had really transformed itself.

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