DETROIT - Chrysler says its first-quarter net profit fell 65 per cent as it shipped fewer older vehicles in preparation for several key product launches.
The company earned $166 million in the January-March quarter, compared with $473 million a year ago. Revenue fell 6 per cent to $15.4 billion.
Chrysler says vehicle shipments fell 6 per cent to 574,000. That's mainly because it ended production of the Jeep Liberty midsize SUV last year. Chrysler is preparing a Toledo, Ohio, factory to make the Jeep Cherokee, which will replace the Liberty later this year.
Launches of the 2014 Grand Cherokee and 2013 Ram Heavy Duty trucks also cut into shipments.
The profit decline comes even though Chrysler's sales were up 8 per cent worldwide in the first quarter. Chrysler predicted a strong performance in the second half.