By Andrew Ganz
Thursday, Dec 6th, 2012 @ 11:56 am
 

Fiat-owned Chrysler is attempting to stir up its chief European-market rival by offering special spiffs aimed at encouraging Volkswagen drivers to take home a new Chrysler product.

This month, VW drivers who currently own or lease any product the German firm makes (aside from one model - more on that later) are eligible for a special $1,000 "conquest" incentive, which lops a grand off of the final sales price of whatever Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep or Fiat model they decide to buy or lease.

The $1,000 rebate doesn't require VW owners to actually trade in their cars. Conquest rebates are fairly common in the United States, but they're usually aimed at a wide swath of competitive vehicles rather than one specific marque.

It's unclear just what started this mini-war between Chrysler and VW, but an educated guess lies in the pentastar brand's Italian ownership. Fiat and VW are aggressive rivals in Europe, and even though their market-specific products are less competitive with each other in the U.S., the animosity seems to be swimming across the Atlantic.

Still, Chrysler and VW aren't exactly known for the bad blood between them - in fact, Chrysler rebadges its minivan for VW to sell in its dealers as the Routan, the only VW-badged model that does not qualify for the $1,000 conquest rebate.