DETROIT – It’s a shame it takes an Italian company and an old rap star to see the value in Detroit. But that’s what is mightily apparent with new Chrysler 200 advertisements, which feature Eminem and the tagline “Imported From Detroit.” The commercial has had 4.8 million view on YouTubeMORE HERE

Keeping an old brand viable is sometimes no more difficult than packaging. Here, a specialized Willys Jeep Wrangler, which according to a Chrysler LLC release dates from 2004. Basically, it’s a Wrangler, but it comes specially packaged, with a Willys decal, and Army paint colors and tires. The Willys packageMORE HERE

A BrandlandUSA reader laments the missed opportunity in Pontiac: It may be that Pontiac is gone and erased from the accounting books of GM, and it may be that the heritage of Pontiac lives in the memoirs of Americana – but the fact of the matter remains that Pontiac outsoldMORE HERE

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Just off the headlines. The massive shutdown of dealers ordered by the Obama administration was a massive failure. Not that you couldn’t have noticed by just talking to some of the dealers themselves. I recall running into a group of repair guys from Sarasota Chrysler-Plymouth, which isMORE HERE

LAGUNA BEACH, Calif. – I recently attended the NHRA Winter Nationals and noticed that the most popular body for those outrageous funny cars seemed to be Pontiac. So when I asked another spectator why, he simply said “they have the best aero-dynamics.” My horse sense told me this was likelyMORE HERE

Sticky

There is one type of job you can’t export. The repair man. Companies in recent years have ignored the repair man; before the Great Recession it was almost cheaper to buy a new lawn mower than to fix the old one. So you just threw the old one out, withMORE HERE

When a car company kills off a longstanding brand, it never ends up well. Marketing people and analysts always believe that killing off the brand will help the other brands in a company’s portfolio, but the reality is that companies that kill off longstanding brands (as opposed to models) areMORE HERE

Elizabethville, Penn. – Carriage brands that might have been around during, say, the time of Little House on the Prairie would be gone. Perhaps most are, but one wagon brand is still around. It’s the company Swab Wagon Co., makers of fire and rescue trucks, pumpers and animal transports. SwabMORE HERE

COWLEY, England – Due to the popularity of the Mini, BMW is saying that it might need to expand production at its plant near Oxford. According to the Financial Times, the plant at Cowley builds 240,000 cars a year, and could be expanded to 260,000 to 300,000. But it mightMORE HERE