The Dodge Brothers Company began in 1900 as a parts and assemblies supplier for Detroit-based automakers, most notably Henry Ford and Olds (later Oldsmobile). The company began building complete automobiles in 1915 and was eventually acquired by Chrysler in 1928. After the bailout and acquisition by Fiat in 2008-2009, the Dodge nameplate was split into three parts, with trucks becoming Ram Trucks, and the Viper sports car becoming part of the SRT badge. Dodge itself remains with lower-priced cars and crossovers in the overall Chrysler lineup.
Dodge is credited with many innovations including the first mass-produced all-steel body construction in its first car, the Dodge Model 30, and the pioneering of the 12-volt electrical system. Although the Willy's Jeep was most well-known during World War II, it was the Dodge line of trucks and ambulances that did most of the work of the Allied war effort, earning the company a reputation for strength and durability that persists today.
Compared to the model lineup under the Chrysler and Jeep nameplates, Dodge offerings are far more aggressive in styling and hold a signature American look of powerful appeal. Spearheaded by the Charger and Challenger cars and Durango crossover, the Dodge brand's crosshair grille and heavy- fender styling sets it apart from other makes.