With the sale of the Chrysler Group to Cerberus Capital Management, analysts are predicting that an injection of funds from the investment firm could see many popular projects and concepts enter the production pipeline. The transfer of ownership should be finalized by the third quarter and by that time the upcoming Dodge Challenger will be just around the corner, while several other models should have been given the green light.

Chrysler spokesman Rick Deneau, who spoke with reporters from Autoweek, mentioned that there’ll be significant investment in Chrysler’s future product lineup. To save costs, seven slow-selling models will be dropped and engineers will reduce the current portfolio of 12 separate platforms to just seven. Chrysler’s new owners are said to be as enthusiastic about the carmaker’s future as its CEO Tom LaSorda, with Deneau commenting that they “have seen the product lineup, and are quite bullish on it”.

Part of Chrysler’s plan is to add 20 new models and 13 major facelifts by the end of 2009, reports Autoweek. Some of the new models include the Challenger, fifth-gen Chrysler minivan, Sebring and Avenger based crossovers and brand new Ram pickup. Out the door are the Dodge Durango and Chrysler Aspen SUVs, but these may be replaced with several all new models including possible production versions of the Chrysler Imperial and Dodge Demon concepts.

One new model that’s guaranteed will be a Chinese sourced minicar based on the Dodge Hornet concept shown at last year’s Geneva Show. This will be a global model similar in size to BMW’s Mini and could be the first of several Chinese built vehicles sold under the Chrysler umbrella.