Initial indications of November’s sales numbers show an industry exhibiting some signs of leveling off after a solid year of steep declines. And when the rest of the industry is merely flat, Chrysler has to satisfy itself with slightly-less-dramatic-than-usual declines. Though Chrysler’s sales [full PDF release here] were “only” down 25 percent compared to November 2008, things were hardly going well a year ago. As a result, Chrysler sold an embarrassing 63,560 units total, ending the month with a 64-day supply of vehicles despite offering some of the industry’s most generous incentives. Forget the percentages, Chrysler’s niche-like volume is the killer here… and it’s relentlessly slipping away as the Pentastarred zombie crashes into oblivion.
All brands were down for the month, with Dodge skidding 8 percent, Jeep dropping 24 percent, Chrysler tumbling 37 percent and the new Ram brand falling 38 percent.
Chrysler’s only month-on-month gainers were the Sebring (+5 percent, 3,044 units), Avenger (+51 percent, 3,571 units), Journey (+93 percent, 5,434 units) and Caravan (+35 percent, 8,171).
The big losers? There are so many to choose from. The decision to keep PT Cruiser’s rolling off the line until 2011 wasn’t well-justified last month, as PT plummeted 91 percent to 310 (no, not a typo) units. Caliber fared little better, as an 85 percent decline dropped volume to a paltry 412 units. Dakota fell to triple-digit volume levels as well, posting a 62 percent decline to 663 units. Though Ram “only” fell 35 percent, it’s status as ChryCo’s best-seller means it shed a whopping 5,751 units compared to last November, for a total volume of 9,787 units.
All in all, Chrysler continues to exhibit all the signs of freefall. Though decent sales of Journey might indicate that Chrysler’s new ad campaigns might be having some affect, it’s clear that nothing short of a biblical miracle will stop Chrysler ignominious decline. And with no new product due to hit ChryCo’s showrooms until this time next year, there’s little reason for optimism. Chrysler is a dead automaker walking.