Chrysler Town & Country’s Future in Doubt as Brand Moves Forward with European Style

By Jacob Brown | August 10, 2011
In the U.S., there's Chrysler. In Europe, there's Fiat's premium-range Lancia brand. Over the next few years, the two will slowly but surely merge to mirror one another across the pond, with each brand picking up some of the other’s cars. While Lancia will soon begin selling the Chysler 200, Chrysler 300, and Chrysler Town & Country models as the Lancia Flavia, Lancia Thema, and Lancia Voyager, respectively, the U.S. brand hasn’t gotten the favor returned quite yet. Expect that to change soon when the Chrysler brand receives two new vehicles based on Lancia models, moving Chrysler further upscale. What’s Hot: While much improved, the flawed Chrysler 200 will be exiting after 2013 to make way for an all-new, sophisticated Fiat-based sedan with a six-speed dual-clutch transmission. What’s Not: The Chrysler Town & Country could be turned into a crossover, taking away one of the better minivan options on the market (although the Dodge Grand Caravan will remain). Other changes include:
  • Compact sedan: Sharing its underpinnings with the upcoming Dodge compact, the Chrysler variant should reach further upscale and open up a new segment for the brand in 2013 as a 2014 model.
  • Chrysler 200: An all-new model will debut with Chrysler’s first use of a dual-clutch transmission.
  • Chrysler 300: After debuting last year, the 2012 Chrysler 300 will get a new instrument panel, a new eight-speed automatic in the V-6 models, and the 300C SRT-8 with 470 horsepower will hit showrooms in the fall.
  • Town & Country: Chrysler’s luxury minivan is set for a redesign for 2014, but execs don’t want overlap with the cheaper Dodge Grand Caravan. One of the two will undergo a makeover, turning into a crossover in the process. It would make more sense for that to be the Town & Country, in keeping with the premium image Chrysler is trying to cultivate.
Source: Automotive News (Subscription required)