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Sirius Grows OEM; XM Adds MSNBC

Sirius Satellite Radio announced new OEM initiatives toward its plan to offer service in 80 vehicle models this year, 50 of which will have factory-installed systems.

Sirius president/CEO Joe Clayton said Daimler Chrysler will introduce Sirius service as a factory option on the Dodge Magnum and Chrysler 300C this spring. In addition, Chrysler will add seven new vehicle factory programs with Sirius this year.

Ford is expected to announce its factory programs with Sirius in the third quarter, Clayton said, and both Mercedes Benz and BMW will offer dealer factory programs in March.

On the retail side, Sirius said it quadrupled its market share in aftermarket products since last year, from 8 percent to 33 percent. Its share for December 2003 was 38 percent, according to Clayton.

XM Satellite Radio also made several announcements. The company says it will offer XM Direct kits for Ford and Chrysler dealerships in May. The kits will allow Sirius-ready factory units for these cars to work with XM service. The kits cost approximately $399 installed.

XM also announced it will add MSNBC programming and several live talk-show programs that will air on current channels. Among the hosts will be Dennis Miller, Michael Savage, Matt Drudge, The Wall Street Journal and Car and Driver Radio.