Chrysler has reported its third quarter financial results, and the company’s net income of $464 million is up 22 percent over last year. Chrysler sold 603,000 vehicles worldwide this quarter, also up from last year by a margin of 8 percent thanks to strong retail sales in the U.S.
This is Chrysler’s ninth consecutive quarter of positive net income, and pre-tax profits hit $862 billion this quarter. Chrysler credits strong sales of the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Ram pickup trucks as key factors in this financial growth. Although Chrysler’s U.S. market share was down slightly over last year at 11.2 percent, retail sales have increased 16 percent over last year and U.S. fleet sales went from 24 percent last year down to 18 percent this year. This is the lowest percentage of fleet sales from Chrysler over the past three years; previously, Chrysler’s U.S. fleet mix was as high as 44 percent in the first quarter of 2010.
In a prepared statement, Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne also noted the introduction of the 2014 Jeep Cherokee compact crossover as an important step forward. Given the growth of the compact SUV segment in the U.S., the Cherokee will be an important vehicle for Chrysler. After numerous delays, the 2014 Jeep Cherokee has finally started shipping to dealers. We’ll see how this launch impacts the company as Cherokee sales ramp up in the coming months.