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'Your future's safe with us' Chrysler boss tells dealers

The boss of Chrysler Jeep UK Simon Elliott has written to all 103 of its dealers reassuring them that despite the upheaval at DaimlerChrysler in the US, there will be no job losses in this country – and he has set them increased targets for the year.

Simon Elliott, the company's UK director, is expecting a 15-20% surge in sales.

He said that while DaimlerChrysler was looking to all its European operations to find ways of cutting costs, the 2001 UK marketing spend and strategy had been signed off by Chrysler Jeep Europe.

“I have written to all the dealers and our own headquarters' staff in Milton Keynes to reassure them that there will be no job losses at Chrysler Jeep UK as a result of the actions being taken in the US. I have also told them our parent company is not looking for us to lose jobs,” Mr Elliott said.

Last year Chrysler Jeep sold 16,500 vehicles in the UK. The increase is expected to be fuelled by the launch of the new Voyager, Jeep Cherokee and a full year's supply of PT Cruiser.

Mr Elliott is also optimistic that Chrysler will give the go-ahead for more models to be converted to right-hand drive. Only two-thirds of the Chrysler models on sale in mainland Europe are available in the UK.

Two weeks ago DaimlerChrysler said it would be axing 26,000 jobs over the next three years and close six plants in the US in an attempt to regain profitability. Full details of the strategy are expected to be announced at its annual conference on Monday.

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