Chrysler Planning Major Incentives to Clear Inventory

Chrysler LLC later on Thursday will announce a major new incentive program aimed at clearing out dealers' inventories of unsold vehicles and jump starting revenue for the ailing auto maker, a spokeswoman for the company confirmed.

The program is expected to combine employee pricing, zero-percent financing and special rebate offers, the spokeswoman said.

"We have some extraordinary — extraordinary — discounts and things we will be announcing today," said the spokeswoman. "This is something that'll hopefully bring consumers into showrooms."

Chrysler already announced a zero-percent financing program last week, which the spokeswoman said has helped increase foot traffic at dealers.

Following a deep downturn in sales in the fourth quarter, Chrysler has been unable to generate much if any revenue so far this year because all of its plants have been idled since before Christmas and dealers are cutting back orders of new cars and trucks so they can clear their lots of the stock they already have. Without much revenue coming in, Chrysler is likely using up significant amounts of cash.

Spurring revenue is critical for Chrysler because the company nearly ran out of money late last year before the U.S. government provided $4 billion in emergency loans to the company. Chrysler has said it hopes to get $3 billion in additional loans but needs to show the Treasury Department a turn around plan by Feb. 17.

Earlier this week Chrysler announced a strategic alliance with Italy's Fiat SpA to show the government it has a strategy to survive, but the alliance could be contingent on lender concessions and additional loan money. Under the terms of the deal, Fiat is not required to put any cash into Chrysler.Click here for more on this story from The Wall Street Journal.

Click here for more on this story from The Wall Street Journal.