Dodge is a vehicle brand that falls under the Chrysler Group family of auto manufacturers. Dodge was established in 1914, and from the brand’s inception, Dodge became known as a maker of light trucks. Dodge trucks and Dodge pickups, which later became known for the ram head logo, grew to a large and diverse family of truck offerings. However, Dodge has also produced plenty of passenger cars over the years, such as coupes, sedans, minivans, crossovers, and sport utility vehicles. The first models of Dodge pickup trucks were based on existing passenger car platforms, but as consumers came to expect more strength and versatility from their trucks, Dodge trucks grew to have dedicated chassis and more suitable body designs. The first Dodge pickups were light duty and medium duty vehicles, and in the 1930s and 1940s, the Dodge truck family was expanded to include heavy duty Dodge pickup models. After World War II, Dodge introduced four-wheel-drive options on some of its truck models, and also introduced some civilian trucks that were based on military designs and technology. The brand was also an innovator in making its trucks more appealing to the casual truck driver. Recognizing that not all pickup owners used their vehicles exclusively for work, Dodge trucks were among the first to be designed with car-like cabins and other comfortable features.
In the late 2000s, Chrysler Group decided to reorganize its structure following the economic crisis and the domestic auto industry bailout. It was also around this time that Chrysler Group was acquired by Fiat, the Italian auto manufacturer. As part of the corporate restructuring, Chrysler decided that Dodge should concentrate on cars and other passenger vehicles. Dodge pickup trucks were still a successful and necessary part of the brand’s overall vehicle lineup, though, so Chrysler decided to create a new brand for the former Dodge truck lineup. So in 2009, shortly after the fourth generation of Dodge pickup trucks was introduced at the North American International Auto Show, Chrysler Group announced the new RAM Trucks brand. The new RAM Truck brand gave Chrysler Group the freedom to market its trucks as strong, reliable vehicles without burdening the Dodge brand with pickups’ commonly held perceptions of aggression and masculinity. Current models in the Dodge pickup truck lineup were simply rebranded as part of the RAM brand, featuring the new RAM logo, which was the already-familiar ram’s head that had graced Dodge vehicles for years. The RAM Truck lineup also features more subtle Dodge badging, to acknowledge and reinforce the long heritage of the former Dodge pickup truck family.