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Thumbs up Chrysler Canada: builds on solid momentum

Chrysler Group builds on solid momentum


The Gazette
September 17, 2011



This has been a historic year for Chrysler Group LLC as we generated strong profits and repaid our government loans - in full, with interest - six years ahead of schedule. Chrysler's Canadian operations have played a big role in helping Chrysler Group's turnaround, manufacturing some of the company's most popular products and recording solid sales and market-share growth.

Over the past 19 months, Chrysler has brought to market 16 all-new or significantly refreshed vehicles. These new cars and trucks have received strong market acceptance. Chrysler Canada sold 204,955 vehicles in 2010, an increase of 41,773 units over 2009 representing the highest year over-year Canadian sales growth in Chrysler's history. We finished the year with a market share of 13 per cent, gaining more than two percentage points of market share, more than any other manufacturer in the country.

This momentum has continued in 2011. Through July, Chrysler Canada has recorded 20 consecutive months of year-over year sales growth and again we have gained more market share than any other manufacturer in Canada with a 15-per-cent share of the Canadian vehicle market. We are also the country's top seller of light trucks, with the Ram truck and Dodge Grand Caravan ranking as the second-and third-best selling vehicles in Canada.

Chrysler Canada has approximately 440 dealers in Canada that sell the Chrysler, Jeep Dodge and Ram vehicles, as well as our newest brand, SRT performance vehicles. In addition, 67 dealers have been named to represent the Fiat brand in its return to Canada, beginning with the iconic Fiat 500 and its fuel-efficient 1.4-litre engine with MultiAir technology, recognized by Popular Science magazine as a "Best of What's New" winner.

During the first half of 2011, Chrysler Group posted strong profitability as our global vehicle sales increased and our alliance with Fiat (who now own 53.5 per cent of Chrysler) began to generate efficiencies.

Chrysler Group employs close to 10,000 people in Canada and approximately 30 per cent of Chrysler's global production takes place in our country. All of our plants are in the process of implementing World Class Manufacturing principles, a system designed to increase worker involvement, improve quality and eliminate waste.

The Windsor, Ont., assembly plant builds the Dodge Grand Caravan and Chrysler Town & Country minivans, two of our signature products. Chrysler invented the minivan in the 1984 model year, and 13 million sales later, we're still leading the pack thanks to constant innovation. Today almost eight out of every 10 minivans sold in Canada are either a Dodge Grand Caravan or Chrysler Town & Country. No other vehicle dominates its respective segment the way Chrysler dominates the minivan vehicle segment.

At our Brampton, Ont., assembly plant, we build the modern muscle car Dodge Challenger as well as the all-new Dodge Charger with its four-door fastback coupe styling and the all-new Chrysler 300, the brand's distinctive flagship.

The Etobicoke casting plant in Toronto produces aluminum die castings and pistons for a number of vehicles. Chrysler secured the future of the facility in August 2010 by announcing an investment of $27.2 million to produce front and rear crossmembers for future vehicles.

The Automotive Research and Development Centre in Windsor also plays a key role for Chrysler, leading and supporting many advanced technology development programs including research facilities for automotive coating and lighting.

Our alliance with Fiat provides efficiencies in development, engineering, purchasing, manufacturing and distribution that will enable the partners to compete effectively on a global scale. The alliance also is helping Chrysler take on the mission of finding technological solutions that will help us reduce our dependence on oil.

Fiat's world-class technology, platforms and powertrains for small-and medium-sized cars will enable Chrysler to expand its offerings of fuel-efficient, ecologically responsible vehicles that are well-suited to the needs of Canadian customers. Next year, we will introduce a version of the Fiat 500 with an all electric powertrain developed by Chrysler. Fiat's leadership in diesel and compressed natural gas (CNG) also provides opportunities for creating sustainable solutions.

Chrysler Group has gone through a profound transformation.

Today, we continue to evolve in order to justify the faith shown in us by taxpayers and we are committed to delivering best-in class products in order to maintain our position as the fastest growing automaker in Canada for a third consecutive year.


Rick

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