Desperation is setting in at Chrysler, one of the few automakers to see sales fall yet again, last month. The automaker has announced plans to step up incentives that will, on some models, yield consumers cash-back savings of as much as $5,500.
Halting the sales slide will be critical, according to industry insiders, if the smallest of the domestic makers hopes to pull off the dramatic turnaround outlined by new CEO Sergio Marchionne, earlier this month. The Italian executive said Chrysler not only hopes to be back in the black, on an operating basis, in 2010, but that it plans to recover roughly five points of market share during the newly-announced, 5-year recovery plan.
While General Motors, which also emerged from bankruptcy over the summer, posted a 4.7% sales increase for October, Chrysler’s numbers were off a painful 30.4%. For the first 10 months of 2009, its sales were down 39%.