Spilling the Beans: Chrysler CEO Marchionne Reveals Future Product Plans for Chrysler, Fiat, and Alfa Romeo
Could we finally be getting new Alfa Romeo vehicles here in the United States again in the near future? Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne seems to think so as he recently sat down with sister publication Automobile to discuss the Detroit-based automaker's future product plans. Since filing for bankruptcy back in 2009, Chrysler's turnaround has been notable if not incredible. Fiat S.p.A. bought a major stake in Chrysler to help nurse the American automaker back to health. Redesigned interiors and materials kick-started Chrysler's rebound, which was followed up by new drivetrains like the Pentastar V-6 engine and the eight-speed automatic transmission. Fiat later acquired a controlling stake in Chrysler with the launch of the all-new 2013 Dodge Dart. The Dart is based on the Alfa Romeo Giulietta platform and is the first product to result from Chrysler and Fiat getting hitched. About those Alfa Romeos though, Marchionne said during the interview with Automobile Magazine that a MiTo replacement and a 4C coupe are set to arrive sometime next year. A small crossover will become available in 2014 along with a Giulietta, Giulia and Giulia Sportswagon. A Spider is also rumored to pop up in the near future as well. Chrysler will be welcoming an all-new 200 sometime next year as well, and will be around the same size of an Audi A4. It can be configured in sedan, coupe, or convertible body styles, and will come in either all-wheel drive or front-wheel drive. Featured engines will be an inline-4 and a V-6. The all-new 100 is set to make its debut for Chrysler in 2016 and will be around the size of the Dodge Dart. The 100 will be front-wheel drive and available with an inline-4 engine only. A new Town & Country is expected to surface in 2015 and will feature a new platform similar to that of the Mercedes-Benz R-Class crossover. It will be available in either front- or all-wheel drive and can be powered by your choice of an inline-4 or a V-6 engine. The 300 is expected to be updated in 2017 as a full-size premium sedan with your choice of a V-6 or V-8 engine and front- or all-wheel drive. Dodge will be sporting the Dart, an updated Journey with a new platform and an SRT6 variant in 2013, a new version of the Challenger in 2014, a revamped Grand Caravan in 2015, and a new Charger in 2016. Chrysler's Street and Racing Technology arm appears like it will continue on as rumors have begun circulating that the Challenger will move over exclusively into that branch and a Journey and Dart variant are also expected within the next year. Sister publication Motor Trend reported in April that a model with the Barracuda nameplate could be revived in the next year or so too. While Marchionne didn't come right out and say it, we expect to see a revamped Barracuda in Dodge's lineup sometime soon. The stalwart Durango is set to be phased out in 2016 and by then the Avenger will have already been gone for two years. Fiat is expected to add the 500L, a 500XL which can seat seven people, a 500X Fouristrada crossover and a 500 Zagato which is the coupe based on the 2011 Geneva concept version. All of the aforementioned models are expected to be released sometime next year. An electric 500 is also slated to join Fiat's North American lineup in 2014. Jeep is going to be busy in the coming years too as the off-road arm of Chrysler will be adding the Jeepster, a subcompact SUV with Fiat DNA, in 2014. The Grand Wagoneer is expected to rejoin Jeep's lineup in 2014 and will be a full-size SUV to replace the soon-to-be-defunct Dodge Durango. A new Patriot is expected in 2014 while a new Liberty should begin showing up sometime next year. The wildly-popular Grand Cherokee is expected to be refreshed in 2016 and the iconic Wrangler will get a new version sometime in the near future but Marchionne didn't exactly disclose as to when that will be. SRT will see the Viper added to its portfolio for the 2013 model year along with the recent additions of the Journey SRT6 and the Dart SRT4. The Grand Cherokee, Charger, and Challenger SRT8 are also expected to live on under SRT's help. If the Barracuda is revived, we expect an SRT version of that as well. Finally, Chrysler will continue to oversee Maserati which will have a new Quattroporte in 2013, a Maseratina in 2013, the anticipated Kubang SUV in 2014, and a GranTurismo/GranCabrio in 2015 and 2017, respectively. Look for the full breakdown in the June issue of Automobile Magazine. What say you? Do you like the direction Chrysler is headed in? Sound off in the comment section below. Source: Automobile
As the great sage Douglas Noel Adams might say: Don't Panic.