Chrysler 300 Driving Chrysler Brand Success

Auburn Hills, Mich., Apr 27, 2006 –

Big news from Dodge and Jeep® has overshadowed Chrysler-branded vehicles in recent months, but that’s about to change.

U.S. sales of the Chrysler 300 surpassed the 300,000 mark in April 2006, making it the quickest Chrysler brand vehicle to reach the milestone in 25 months. This comes on the heels of another Chrysler brand achievement: global sales of the Chrysler PT Cruiser exceeded 1 million units in March.

In 10 years, Chrysler brand sales in the U.S. have increased 144 percent from 265,897 units in 1995 to 649,293 units, making 2005 the brand’s best sales year in company history. Since its introduction in March 2004, the Chrysler 300 has powered the Chrysler brand to new sales heights; first quarter Chrysler brand sales increased 32 percent to 162,888 units compared to first quarter 2004 sales of 123,460 units.

“The Chrysler Group is firing on all cylinders,” said Gary Dilts, Senior Vice President – Sales, Chrysler Group. “In addition to the growth of the Chrysler brand, the all-new 2006 Dodge Caliber is moving out of dealer showrooms at a brisk pace. The Jeep®family is growing with the recent introduction of the 2007 Jeep Compass and Jeep Patriot. We have a strong product lineup going into the spring and summer selling seasons.”

With the introduction of the Chrysler 300, the Chrysler Group revived the rear-wheel-drive (RWD) sedan after a 15-year hiatus. In addition, the legendary HEMI® engine returned to the Chrysler brand after nearly 50 years with the debut of the Chrysler 300C. Personifying the image of new American muscle, the Chrysler 300 earned the title of the most most-awarded new car in automotive history in 2005.

However, the Chrysler brand is always looking to improve. Coming later this year, the 2007 Chrysler 300 Long Wheelbase will feature a wheelbase that is 6 inches longer than the current model, providing more than 46 inches of rear legroom and an additional 10.2 cubic feet of interior space. This extended Chrysler 300 is expected to attract sales from the limousine industry, as well as retail customers.

“The Chrysler brand’s forward-thinking vehicle designs continue to resonate well with the public and are some of the most desired in the marketplace,” Dilts said. “With a portfolio lineup to accommodate almost every vehicle price segment, the performance, luxury and affordability of Chrysler brand vehicles continues to stand out.”

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