Over the past dozen years, the domestic auto industry has worked hard to shrink its brands to more reasonable levels. Gone are Eagle, Plymouth, Pontiac and Oldsmobile and some would speculate that Mercury should have joined the extinction club long ago. Of course, Ford has sold off Jaguar, Land Rover and Austin Martin, while GM is in the process of jettisoning Saab, Hummer, Saturn, and Opel.
However, if Autoextremist's Peter DeLorenzo is to be believed, the Chrysler portfolio could grow instead of shrink. DeLorenzo says he's hearing rumblings around Motown that Chrysler could break off the Ram from the Dodge, with the truck line becoming a dedicated brand. Doing so would make Dodge a car outlet, while the Ram brand would be all trucks, all the time, including the Dakota.
We don't get how this could possibly be a good idea, considering Chrysler's financial position and struggling sales. Why spend money marketing a new brand, while asking battle-weary dealers to invest in more signage and differentiated floor space? At this point, its just speculation and we're hoping it stays that way.