The Dodge Tomahawk. Executive Arrogance. Micheline's Prophecy.

In lieu of Chrysler's new board, last night I wandered through their media site, looking for something interesting. Remember the 2003 Dodge Tomahawk concept? Powered by the Viper engine, it's the only Chrysler concept without a steering wheel.

The Tomahawk went 0-60 in 2.5 seconds and hit a top speed of 420 screaming mph

I came across a speech given in October 2003 by Dr. Dieter Zetsche, Chrysler's CEO. Addressing the Chief Executives' Club of Boston, he sneers:

"There’s … a new book out, written by a “New York Times” auto industry reporter, with the title, 'The End of Detroit.' According to the publisher, the author boldly predicts that by the end of the decade … and I quote … “One of the American car makers will no longer exist in its present form.” It’s as if the Oracle of Delphi speaks to us from the shelves of Barnes & Noble!"

Not street legal, Chrysler referred to the polished billet aluminum beast as a 'rolling sculpture'

For the record, the sacred prophetic site was the oracle of Apollo at Delphi.

The Tomahawk weighed 1,500 lbs and only had room for a 3.25 gallon tank

The book Dr. Dieter's referring to was distinguished Detroit-based writer Micheline Maynard's gripping "The End of Detroit: How the Big Three Lost Their Grip on the American Car Market." The actual text reads:

"Indeed, there is a strong chance that by the end of this decade, at least one of Detroit's Big Three will not continue in the same form that it is in now."

Chrysler reportedly sold nine Tomahawks through Neiman Marcus, at $550,000 each

The oracle of Micheline at 8 Mile clarified her point in an Interview with two days after that speech:

"… One won't survive in its present form. That means a restructuring, i.e., job cuts, plant closings and streamlining, or at the most extreme, a [Chapter 11] bankruptcy."

Enough said.


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