The plan includes vehicles on four Fiat platforms, with models planned for the minicar, or A-segment, right though to the midsized D-segment. No decision has been made on timing or volumes but a concrete plan is expected to be completed by April 30, reports Automotive News.
One of the most likely vehicles is the pint-sized Fiat 500, which one source said will be manufactured at Chrysler's Toluca, Mexico, plant for sale in North America. This plant is currently responsible for the Dodge Journey crossover and PT Cruiser but production of this latter model is confirmed to end in the middle of the year.
Chrysler will reportedly get its own minicar based on a Fiat platform, which it would sell as a Dodge. The most likely option would be a vehicle based on the five-door Fiat Panda hatchback. Chrysler is in need of more fuel-efficient vehicles to meet CAFE regulations that are set to roll-in across the course of the next decade, and adding the compact Italian models to its lineup will help it somewhat.
For the B-segment, Chrysler is expected to get a subcompact based on the next-generation Fiat Grande Punto. Selling alongside the new B-segment model will be the Alfa Romeo MiTo, with which it will share its platform. There is also the possibility of a new crossover vehicle based on this platform also being added to the Chrysler fold.
In the midsized C and D-segments, Fiat will reportedly lend Chrysler a platform – most likely a new ‘C-evo’ platform which has been developed for the next-generation Alfa Romeo 147. Stretched versions of these could be used for a replacement for slow selling vehicles like the Chrysler Sebring and Dodge Avenger. Chrysler originally established a team to develop a new midsize platform under the ‘Project D’ title, but the group was disbanded last September and the project moved down Chrysler’s list of priorities in the face of the credit crisis and the request for federal funds.
In terms of powertrain options, the alliance could give Chrysler access to Fiat’s 1.4 and 1.8L four-cylinder direct-injection petrol engines. Fiat’s diesel engines would likely be out of bounds for now due to the relatively high-expense of getting the engines to meet stricter U.S. emissions standards. Chrysler’s own Phoenix V6 engine is reportedly still in development and could be lent to Fiat for its vehicles.
Finally, Fiat may be able to distribute vehicles like the Dodge Journey crossover and Dodge Dakota pickup in Latin America and other markets.