Chrysler sees sales growth outside US
DaimlerChrysler AG's Chrysler Group will sell over 20,000 Dodge Calibers outside North America in 2007.india Updated: May 06, 2006 17:58 IST
DaimlerChrysler AG's Chrysler Group will sell over 20,000 Dodge Calibers outside North America in 2007, a Chrysler Group executive said on Friday.
"I think in the international business we can sell over 20,000 Calibers next year," Thomas Hausch, Chrysler's director of international sales and marketing told reporters at a presentation of the car in Spain.
Dodge is using its new Dodge Caliber -- a kind of compact sporty wagon -- to spearhead its push into global markets.
The five-door hatchback is being launched in the second quarter of 2006 outside of North America and will be available in around 100 overseas countries.
Hausch said over 95 per cent of Chrysler and Jeep dealers had signed up for Dodge. Chrysler Group registrations in western Europe had risen 17 per cent so far this year, he added.
Hausch also said the automaker had a budget worth "hundreds of millions of dollars" for international expansion of the Dodge nameplate over the next five years.
Dodge is positioning the US-made Caliber as a distinctive vehicle with flexible configurations, and which costs around 10 percent less than similarly equipped rivals in key European markets.
Prices start at just under 13,000 euros, or $16,510 excluding value-added tax, for a 1.8-litre petrol model, and top 18,800 euros, or $23,876 for higher-powered versions with a 2-litre turbo-diesel engine.
Hausch said there are now no plans to sell the Caliber in China, but that the company is considering expanding into Asia in a second phase.
Dodge, part of the group's US arm Chrysler, accounted for 5 per cent of Chrysler's overseas sales in 2005. That is expected to rise to 20 per cent to 30 per cent by 2009, Hausch said in February.
Western Europe is Chrysler's biggest overseas market, accounting for around half of the 180,000 vehicles it sold outside North America last year.
Chrysler aims to boost its western Europe market share to 1.4 per cent by 2009 from around 0.6 per cent now.