In an interview with Britain's Autocar.co.uk, Fiat/Chrysler boss Sergio Marchionne indicated that the Chrysler line of cars could "converge" with the Fiat-owned Lancia brand by the end of the year.

Marchionne told the publication that “in Europe, Lancia is an undersized, underdeveloped brand, with nothing bigger than the Delta [compact hatchback]. Chrysler, which has a true global reach, has nothing smaller. Put them together and you have a full line-up.”

Pointing out that there aren't any plans to bring the Lancia brand to the U.S., Marchionne added that there is no structural conflcit preventing such a merger. The Italian automaker is known for its small, but luxurious vehicles.

A Lancia Delta rebadged with a Chrysler grille and logos was unveiled at the 2010 Detroit Auto Show to guage reaction for the concept. Lancia-derived vehicles could form the basis of replacements for soon to be discontinued Chrysler products like the P.T. Cruiser and Sebring midsize sedan.

Click here for more on this story from Autocar.co.uk

Click here for a slideshow from 2010 Detroit Auto Show