Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has denied reports it had decided to can the Chrysler brand in Japan, after local media reported it was planning to stop selling the US cars as early as next year following years of poor sales.
"Although FCA Japan has already announced its intention to concentrate its resources on the Jeep brand ahead, no decisions have been made regarding (the) Chrysler brand," the automaker said in a statement sent to Reuters on Monday.
The news agency said the Nikkei business daily had reported the automaker, which also sells Jeep, Fiat, Alfa Romeo and Abarth in Japan, was close to deciding to axe the Chrysler brand, which posted sales of less than 300 vehicles in 2016, having fallen steadily since around 2000.
Sales of the brand in Japan have shrunk to roughly one-tenth of what they were a decade ago, according to Reuters.
FCA currently sells only the Chrysler 300 sedan through Japan's Jeep dealerships.
Reuters said Fiat and Jeep sales have been growing in Japan, however. Last year they sold around 6,700 and 9,400 units, respectively, making them top 10-selling foreign brand vehicles there.
Last year, 295,000 foreign brand new cars were sold in the country, roughly 10% of total new vehicle sales, the report added.