FCA decided to eschew a dedicated Chrysler and Dodge presentation but CEO Sergio Marchionne mentioned the brands a handful of times. Despite rumors to the contrary, he confirmed the future of both brands is “not in question” as they are important to the company’s North American lineup.
While both brands are safe, there will be changes in the future. Autocar notes Marchionne said “Our view is that 70% of the US market is already non-sedan, so to try and build traditional sedans is not helpful.” However, that doesn’t mean the company is going all-in on trucks and crossovers as the executive stated “Brands like Dodge can play a role there because of their performance heritage.”
That, of course, is a subtle hint there’s still a future for the Charger and Challenger. Marchionne mentioned the cars later on and Motor Authority says he downplayed speculation the next-generation models would ride on the same platform that underpins the Alfa Romeo Giulia.
As he explained, “We may not necessarily have to go as far as the Giorgio architecture for Dodge as long as we are willing to commit to a significant upgrade to the current architecture to make it competitive.” Marchionne then said the company is already working on an updated version of the architecture and “by the time we finish … you will not recognize its origins.”
The fate of the 300 is murkier as Chrysler will transition into a “people carrier” brand. A new model will be added sometime in the future and it’s likely the full-size crossover that Marchionne previously suggested would arrive in mid-2019.