Tom LaSorda's term at the helm of Chrysler Group's sales and marketing operations is nearing an end.

“I'm going to keep it for, probably, a couple more months,” says LaSorda, who also is president and CEO.

And he “definitely will not go outside (Chrysler)” for a successor to Joe Eberhardt, who left the post in December after a rift developed between the auto maker and its dealer body.

Dealers were saddled with a glut of poorly equipped vehicles after Chrysler overscheduled production during second-half 2006. The result left dealers disgruntled and forced the auto maker to stockpile vehicles for which there were no orders.

To formally make amends, LaSorda delivered a clear message at a meeting with his retailers at the 2007 National Automobile Dealers Assn. convention last month: “Trust us. We'll back you guys up.”

He has met with dealers in a bid to restore their faith in Chrysler. “We committed (to dealers) that we'd get sales moving.