The photo above, from Chrysler's press conference at the 2009 Detroit Auto Show, is nothing but things that are no more. The gorgeous 200C EV has evaporated. The gentlemen on the podium, Jim Press and Tom LaSorda, have gone their various ways. And the background is arrayed with ENVI electric cars that are all (most likely) gone, as well as the division that created them. Everything swallowed by waves in Chrysler's Year of the Storm.

This year Chrysler is practically avoiding the hubbub entirely, in that it will have no press conference at next month's Detroit Auto Show. It won't be for lack of cars: they'll have items from all four brands, including some limited-edition models. Chrysler's head of marketing, Olivier Francois, said that after the big event last month to reveal the long-term plan, "We presented our plans and the next step is to present the cars."

Understandably, industry observers seem to think that it's a bad idea for Chrysler to go mum in Detroit. Chrysler's a private company and no outsider knows what the real situation is inside the castle walls. If Chrysler does go for the splash of a press conference, with no new models to show or even talk about they'll be ripe for charges of "All that's great talk now show us the cars!" That makes it sound like a case of being damned either way. But at least they'll be there, unlike Saab...

[Source: The Detroit News]