Chrysler, Fiat move ahead with product planning

The latest product planning from Chrysler-Fiat will see some American favourites dumped and replaced by new lightweight Italians, beginning with the Dodge Viper in mid-2010.
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Chrysler says it will build just 500 more Vipers, with a replacement “under consideration” for mid-2012 - but unlikely to be anything like the original halo car.

The PT Cruiser will join it on the scrap heap at the end of next year, while the future of the Nitro is also clouded beyond mid-2011.

The news is better for the 300C and Challenger however, with both vehicles to be continued indefinitely and due for updates in 2010 and 2011 respectively.

By 2013, Fiat Group will provide the platforms for four cars wearing Chrysler badges.


These will include a new compact sedan in 2012, as well as a midsize crossover, a Sebring replacement and a Fiat Group-produced small car in 2013.

The small car and compact sedan will be shared by both Chrysler and Dodge, with the Caliber to be replaced by an as yet unamed C-segment sedan.

Similarly at Jeep, Fiat will provide the platform for a small SUV and a larger C-segment platform to underpin a Patriot/Compass replacement.

Meanwhile at Fiat, the new 500 is due late next year, with the 500C convertible to follow in 2011 and the hotted up Abarth in 2012.

The plans mean that by 2014, 56 per cent of vehicles sold by Chrysler-Fiat will trace their platform origins from the Italian side of the corporation.

by Tim Beissmann