Chrysler: The smallest of the biggest USA manufacturers

2013-11-21 11:38:45

Chrysler is among the big three of the American automobile manufacturers the Chrysler Group LLC has its headquarters at Auburn Hills, Michigan, USA. The group is the subsidiary of the world famous Italian automobile giants Fiat. Production wise Chrysler was the 12th biggest automobile manufacturers in 2011. The company under its brand Chrysler sells Jeep, Dodge and Ram brands all over the world and also the manufacture the Fiat vehicles marketed in North America.

Chrysler Corporation established in 1925 by Walter Chrysler when the Maxwell Motor Company became defunct. It bought the Dodge Brothers Company and Fargo truck company in 1928 and tremendously expanded its production and started marketing its automobiles under these brands. The company also presented Plymouth and DeSoto brands in the same year.  A number of factors in the 70s hampered the progress of Chrysler including the 1973 oil crisis and the company was on the brink of going bankrupt. But with the induction of Lee lacocca as CEO the company reversed its fortunes and became profitable in the80s. The American Motor Corporation was acquired by Chrysler in 1987 and the popular Jeep brand, which was also very profitable, was brought into the folds of Chrysler.

Chrysler was merged into Daimler-Benz AG, the German automobile manufacturer in 1998 which became debatable for the investors and the company was sold to the Cerberus Capital management and was rechristened as Chrysler LLC in the year 2007. Like other big auto manufacturers in America Chrysler also suffered setbacks in 2008-2010 and was bailed out along with General Motors by loans worth billions of dollars from the US government. The loan prevented the companies from closure and in 2009 the Chrysler wriggled out of bankruptcy with the help of the US & Canadian Governments, United Auto Workers pension fund, and Fiat after it filed bankruptcy reorganization under chapter 11. Fiat emerged as the major shareholder after it acquired the shares of other parties.

Chrysler’s sales in domestic circuit are heavily on fleets and it netted a56% on the total sales in this category in February, 2010. It averaged a 38 per cent for the whole year while the industry average was just 19%. The company however set plans to reduce sales to fleet customers to the industry average in 2011. In the global market this is the smallest of the “Big Three” automakers from the USA, the other two being Ford and GM. OICA ranked Chrysler as the 13th largest auto manufacturing company in the year 2010 and it clocked 1.58 million units   that year. For Japanese consumers Yanase Company Ltd is the exclusive retailer for all Chrysler products that include Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep.

The company in the year 2009 started offering lifetime warranty for the vehicles as a marketing strategy and the offer covered countries like USA, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands for models 2006, 2007, 2008 and for models 2009. But it excluded Diesel vehicles, SRT models, Sprinter models, Ram Chassis Cab, some fleet vehicles and hybrid system components. The scheme later was converted to five years or 100, 000 miles for models 2010 and later versions.

Chrysler’s product line was consisted of Chrysler Luxury sedans, convertibles and minivans, Dodge SUV, passenger cars, minivans, RAM trucks and commercial vehicles, Jeep off road vehicles, SUV and crossovers, SRT High Performance vehicles, MOPAR cars and trucks. As on December 2012 the company had 65,535 employees on its payroll. 

Chrysler models:

Chrysler Cirrus
Chrysler 300
Chrysler 200
Chrysler Le Baron
Chrysler Crossfire
Chrysler 300M
Chrysler Prowler
Chrysler LHS
Chrysler PT Cruiser
Chrysler TC
Chrysler Pacifica
Chrysler New Yorker
Chrysler Aspen
Chrysler Sebring
Chrysler Concorde
Chrysler Grand Voyager
Chrysler Imperial
Chrysler Town and Country
Chrysler Voyager