Chrysler Fiat laid out its five-year plan for reporters today, and the highlight for us is an upcoming plug-in hybrid minivan and Chrysler 200 sedan. Even if these are only compliance cars, it adds some much-needed depth and efficiency to Chrysler’s lineup. But what about the rest of the upcoming cars?
The five-year plan actually covers Fiat Chrysler’s entire portfolio, and it breaks down thusly.
The next-phase of this unlikely alliance kicks off later this year at the Los Angeles Auto Show, where a refreshed Chrysler 300 will debut. Following that in 2016 will be the Chrysler 100 C-segment competitor, along with a new Town & Country minivan available with an unspecified plug-in hybrid drivetrain. In 2017 the just-unveiled Chrysler 200 is due for a mid-cycle refresh, and will also get an available plug-in hybrid version. Finally, in 2018 a brand new Chrysler 300 is slated to arrive, more than a decade after it first debuted.
These moves are designed to move Chrysler down market, in a bid to compete with Chevrolet and Ford. Fiat, meanwhile, will continue to invest in the 500 line of vehicles, with the 500X next on the list of debuts in 2015.
Dodge, meanwhile, is also getting a major makeover, beginning with the absorption of the short-lived SRT brand back into the fold effectively immediately. The first steps of Dodge’s rebranding have already happened with the launch of the new Charger and Challenger, while the Viper gets a refresh in 2015.
A new Dodge Journey is on tap, though the Dodge Caravan will be killed off. In 2016, an all-new Dodge Dart is due to arrive alongside a hotly-anticipated SRT version powered by a turbo four-banger and sporting all-wheel drive. In 2018, Dodge will get a new B-segment sedan/hatchback, and all its products will have a sportier edge to them going forward.
Jeep is making an all-out push for volume, with the new Jeep Renegade serving as the vanguard. 2015 brings a refreshed Jeep Cherokee, while 2016 sees a refresh for the still-fresh Jeep Cherokee. For 2017 a new Wrangler will launch, hopefully with an available diesel motor, and 2018 sees the return of the Grand Wagoneer nameplate.
That makes up a bulk of the announcements, save for the launch of the Ram Promaster diesel later this year, and a pair of new compact cars for Alfa Romeo between 2016 and 2018.
It’s a lot to take in, and furthermore Chrysler isn’t shackled to this plan of action. I’m just happy to see Chrysler’s government-funded research into plug-in hybrids is finally getting some use. What family wouldn’t love a 50 MPG minivan?