Do you remember Dodge being part of NASCAR? If you do then you’ve been watching the sport since at least before 2012 because that was the last year that Dodge was part of the NASCAR circuit. The decision to pull Dodge out of NASCAR came in 2009, but the current contracts had to run out in 2012 before the brand could leave the sport altogether. The decision, which was made by FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne, was a simply one of being able to pay the bills that were coming in for FCA which as facing the bankruptcy that was part of the world wide downfall of the automotive market.
This decision to leave NASCAR is one that Marchionne has said he wanted to reverse for years, but he has to find the right way for Dodge to reenter the sport and be a strong participant. When he made the decision to leave in 2009, it was all about saving money, but now FCA seems to be in a better position and ready to make a reentry to the sport and offer their cars to as many teams as want to get behind the wheel of a Dodge on the track.
This brings up the question of what car would be the basis of the NASCAR models that would compete for Dodge. While NASCAR officials have confirmed they could add another manufacturer to the mix in the near future, FCA has recently deleted the Chrysler 200 and the Dodge Dart, which could be the right choices for the reentry. Of course the Dart could be right and it does carry a name that has a strong history in racing, but another model from Dodge could be made to be the right choice to race alongside the other brands on the track.
Currently the NASCAR brands on the track include Ford, Chevrolet and Toyota. For a period of time Ford and Chevrolet both had models that were built off midsized sedans much the way Toyota has the Camry based race cars on the track right now. Over time that has changed to Ford and Chevrolet offering the Mustang and Camaro based models that currently prowl the corners and give racers the edge. This only leaves Toyota using a midsized sedan model on the track and certainly gives thought to what Dodge could bring back to the NASCAR circuit for racers to enjoy.
Two models have the right size and built and one competes directly with the Mustang and Camaro in the public sector. The Charger or the Challenger could be the platform used for the next iteration of the NASCAR entry from Dodge. With the new Demon coming for the Challenger that model could be the front runner for the position on the track during the races we enjoy on Sunday afternoons most of the year. This would be an impressive and exciting way to get the Demon name out in front of the public, especially for those who aren’t familiar with this powerful name.
So far what Dodge would bring back to NASCAR is simply speculation as nothing has been confirmed, but there are certainly options for the right models to be on the track that could compete with the rest of the field. Adding Dodge back to the race can bring those loyal to Dodge as brand loyalists to a renewed racing following that would be fan and fun for them to enjoy. This reentry would also signify the success that Dodge and FCA have enjoyed in recent history making it possible for them to show the world they are all the way back by bringing a great new race machine to NASCAR.