One of the most dynamic brands in U.S. automotive history emerged mainly as a truck line after the two-year recession and Chrysler's takeover by Fiat in 2009. But its long history touched every kind of vehicle. Founded by brothers Horace and John Dodge in 1900, after their untimely, separate deaths from disease in 1920, the brand eventually fell into Chrysler's hands. Over the subsequent decades, Dodge evolved as a medium-priced brand in the company's stable between Plymouth and DeSoto (and later, Chrysler). It emerged as a power brand in the Sixties, fielding the Charger and Challenger muscle cars. During the Seventies and Eighties, Dodge was thwarted as a full-line brand by rising fuel prices, foreign imports, and Chrysler's own financial infirmity. But Dodge's Grand Caravan became the company's best-selling minivan in the Eighties. And in the meantime, the Dodge Ram pick-up line contributed to the Nineties boom in truck sales and cemented Dodge's role in Chrysler's brand architecture. Introduced in 1996, the Dodge Viper roadster became a high-end collectible and enhanced the brand's performance image. Dodge emerged from the Daimler-Benz era as the company's strongest brand besides Jeep. But its future under new ownership by Fiat is unclear; Fiat already seems to have created a new standalone brand for its pick-ups called Ram.