As part of the forward progress the company has been touting for the past year or so, Chrysler is moving to strengthen its lineup of fuel-efficient models. Much of the technology being implemented, comes courtesy of Fiat SpA, the Italian auto-manufacturer that owns a stake in Chrysler Group LLC, and shares its CEO. Fiat is renowned for its small engine technology.
Paolo Ferrero is a former Fiat exec who now heads Chrysler powertrain. He reports that work is under way on a variety of drive systems, involving gasoline, electric, hybrid, and diesel technologies. He also said that new, more fuel-efficient transmissions are also part of Fiat’s plan for Chrysler.
It looks as though we can expect some exciting things with regard to Chrysler’s conventional gasoline engines. Fiat’s MultiAir technology, which improves engine combustion, is expected to come to Chrysler engines, as is turbocharging. The company also says that all vehicles will soon be offered with at least a 6-speed automatic transmission, with some models featuring eight or nine gearboxes.
“Chrysler has to have as many standout attributes as they can given that their historic profile has been more downmarket,” said analyst Joe Phillippi of AutoTrends Consulting Inc. in Short Hills, N.J. A nine-speed transmission in a minivan “will generate good buzz for them,” he said.
– By: Stephen Calogera
Source: Detroit News