OPINION: The Chrysler Brand's Pathway To An Electrified Future! (2023)

My Great-Grandfather was Walter P. Chrysler. For the past 45 years, my goal has been to save the brand as the former Chrysler Corporation was slowly reduced in brands and subsidiaries. Thankfully, Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares has provided new life to the brand, and the current Chrysler boss, Chris Feuell, in my opinion, has what it takes to move Chrysler to a new frontier.

OPINION: The Chrysler Brand's Pathway To An Electrified Future! (1)

The leaders at Stellantis have figured out that FIAT, Peugeot, Maserati, and Alfa Romeo will never be large mainstream products, especially for the blue-collar workforce and middle class in the United States. So, I do have some concerns regarding this rush to electric vehicles and thought I would share my opinion.

A short review of Chrysler and its electric history:

OPINION: The Chrysler Brand's Pathway To An Electrified Future! (2)

Led by Lou Rhodes, ENVI, an in-house Chrysler organization, was formed in September 2007 with a focus on establishing Chrysler leadership in electric-drive vehicles and related advanced-propulsion technologies. Team members were selected for their exceptional skills in portfolio management, modular architecture, product engineering, manufacturing, design, and procurement and supply.

OPINION: The Chrysler Brand's Pathway To An Electrified Future! (3)

At the time, Chrysler Group had developed products like the Chrysler Town & Country EV, Jeep® Wrangler Unlimited EV, Lotus-based Dodge Circuit EV, and the striking Chrysler 200C EV Concept.

However, the organization was disbanded in November 2009, after FIAT took over the Chrysler Group. So much for Chrysler being the “ENVI” of electric vehicles.

In 2000, DaimlerChrysler purchased Global Electric Motorcars (GEM). It took until 2004 for the new partnership to start building new models. However, by January 2006, GEM had over 150 dealers.

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OPINION: The Chrysler Brand's Pathway To An Electrified Future! (4)

I remember seeing them drive inside the Auburn Hills Headquarters and have been told that many still roam the building to this day.Unfortunately, in April 2011, Chrysler Group sold GEM to Polaris Industries, Inc. where it remains today.

Chrysler was clearly ahead in the electric game during the mid-2000s, contrary to what most of the public thought.

But while those vehicles are the most familiar with present-day Mopar enthusiasts, Chrysler’s electrified path goes back even further with its roots going back to the “ELECTROBAT”. The Electrobat was one of the very first electric vehicles.

Manufactured in Philadelphia, Pennslyvania in 1894, the Electrobat would later become part of Rinker Electric in 1896, then go through a number of names like Electric Vehicle Co., Columbia Electric, Columbia, Columbia-Knight, eventually merging with other automakers to form the United States Motor Company in 1911, then officially become Maxwell Motor Company in 1913, before being changed to Chrysler in 1924.

Then there was the Chrysler TEVan which was built from 1993 to 1995 by Chrysler and sold primarily to electric utilities throughout the United States. The first generation used either nickel-iron or nickel-cadmium batteries. Only 56 were produced and sold for approximately $120,000 each. Half were produced using nickel-iron batteries and the other half were equipped with nickel-cadmium packs. The TEVan was built on the same production line as the gasoline-powered minivans at Chrysler’s Windsor Assembly Plant. It had a top speed of 70 mph, seating for five adults, and a curb weight of 5,060 lbs.

OPINION: The Chrysler Brand's Pathway To An Electrified Future! (5)

The second generation, named the Electric Powered Interurban Commuter Vehicle (EPIC), was launched in 1997 with advanced lead acid batteries and later in 1998 with nickel-metal-hydride batteries. It was offered for lease in New York and California in 1999.

Chrysler’s current path to electrification:

(Video) 2022 Chrysler Airflow | Our First Battery-Electric Vehicle

OPINION: The Chrysler Brand's Pathway To An Electrified Future! (6)

Since 1924, the Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) has been the core power system for the Chrysler Corporation and its affiliated companies. With Chrysler turning 100 years old shortly and nearly 90 years after the inception of the original Airflow, a new electric vehicle with the iconic nameplate will arrive. The new Airflow battery-electric vehicle (BEV) is a five-passenger crossover based on the all-new STLA Large architecture and was introduced unofficially during the Stellantis EV Day 2021 presentation, catching a lot of people in the automotive industry by surprise.

OPINION: The Chrysler Brand's Pathway To An Electrified Future! (7)

Chrysler presented its new BEV concept, at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, on January 5th, 2022. For all of the Chrysler historians, it was on January 5th, 1924 that my Great-Grandfather introduced the first-ever Chrysler at the Commodore Hotel in New York City.

OPINION: The Chrysler Brand's Pathway To An Electrified Future! (8)

On September 7th, 2021, Chris Feuell joined the Stellantis team as the CEO of Chrysler. Under Tavares, the Chrysler brand was given life and a breath of fresh air under Feuell began.

With the STLA Large architecture, the Chrysler brand is poised to deliver a portfolio of all-electric products by 2028. With the Airflow already given the greenlit, the next-generation minivan, another crossover vehicle, and possibly a sedan are rumored to be in the works and will be in production by the end of the decade.

OPINION: The Chrysler Brand's Pathway To An Electrified Future! (9)

But while Chrysler is aiming to be an all-electric brand, the STLA Large architecture does offer the brand flexibility that if something were to happen to its current plans, the vehicles could also feature ICE, plug-in electric (PHEV), or hybrid-electric (HEV) propulsion systems as well.

Having options in an uncertain future:

OPINION: The Chrysler Brand's Pathway To An Electrified Future! (10)

Tavares has said that 96% of the vehicles sold in the United States by the end of 2025, will offer some type of electrified option; either BEVs, PHEVs, or HEVs. These predictions are important as the field of discussion could possibly change. Tavares has expressed criticism for EVs, as he has said that “electrification is a technology chosen by politicians, not by the industry.”

(Video) 2022 NYIAS | Chrysler Airflow Graphite Concept

Unlike General Motors (GM), Ford Motor Company, Volvo, Rivian, and some others who are betting on an all-electric future, is it the right direction to go? Toyota was the first manufacturer who focused on major hybrid production, but now their CEO, Akio Toyoda has joined Tavares expressing his concerns over full electrification. Both CEOs are smart and protecting their interests in the United States as our political pendulum could take a dramatic change at any point.

OPINION: The Chrysler Brand's Pathway To An Electrified Future! (11)

What happens if oil starts to flow again and prices drop? Toyota and Stellantis, do not believe that BEVs are the only solution to producing more sustainable vehicles and achieving “carbon neutrality”.

More and more questions:

OPINION: The Chrysler Brand's Pathway To An Electrified Future! (12)

There are also other issues at hand. Affordability and how long will there be subsidies? Will the current dealers sell these new products or will automakers drop dealers in favor of their own boutique-like stores like Tesla?

Like Tesla, Rivian is also working hard to bypass dealers and is hitting roadblocks in several states. Ford has also put their dealer on notice, with Ford CEO Jim Farley saying he would like to have a more direct route with the automaker to purchase its future products.

OPINION: The Chrysler Brand's Pathway To An Electrified Future! (13)

There is also the question of where our supplies of Lithium, Cobalt, Nickle, and Magnesium, the major ingredients in the production of batteries for BEVs come from, and are we beholden to any foreign country? How safely can we recycle these batteries and minerals?

Is there a good plan to install universal fast charging infrastructure and not clutter the landscape? Will these charging stations feature handicap parking spaces and how will it impact people with their older ICE vehicles having to park further away from shopping, various businesses, etc.?

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OPINION: The Chrysler Brand's Pathway To An Electrified Future! (14)

The Anderson Group put out a report, “Real world cost of fueling EVs and ICE vehicles” back in October of last year. Then, with lower fuel prices it was more costly to own a BEV. The second edition of the report done in April of this year showed that some BEVs have a fueling cost advantage, due to the higher energy prices. This tells me the whole nascent electric experiment for now is on somewhat shaky ground.

I am for protecting our environment but as one political party is against oil and the other is for a free market where does this experiment go? As Mr. Tavares said, “this technology is chosen by politicians” and I would have to agree with him.

For now, the Chrysler brand and its flexible architecture seem to be a safe option. The sky is the limit for the iconic brand my Great-Grandfather started.

FAQs

Does Chrysler have a future? ›

Not only is Chrysler not going away, but the brand is finally getting its long-sought renaissance. Reborn as Stellantis' high-tech brand, Chrysler is getting several new vehicles as a necessary part of its move to an all-electric lineup by 2028.

Is Chrysler going to build electric cars? ›

As we approach our second century in business, Chrysler engineers and designers are working on our most radical idea yet: a full lineup of innovative, seamlessly-connected electric vehicles by 2028.

What is the Chrysler Airflow? ›

The Chrysler Airflow is a full-size car produced by Chrysler from 1934 to 1937. The Airflow was the first full-size American production car to use streamlining as a basis for building a sleeker automobile, one less susceptible to air resistance.

What is the future of Stellantis? ›

These plans include 25 new all-electric vehicles for the USA, hydrogen fuel cell technology, and selling a lot more vehicles to customers online. The group outlined its vision of the future in a new blueprint that it's calling Dare Forward 2030.

What will happen to Chrysler? ›

CEO Carlos Tavares confirmed that Stellantis plans to bring back the Chrysler brand from its current neglected state. Good news for Chrysler: Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares today said the brand will be "relaunched" with "gorgeous" new models.

Has Chrysler quality improved? ›

Chrysler suffered another hit to its reputation after J.D. Power released its 2021 U.S. Initial Quality Study (IQS) in August. Overall, it found that new vehicle quality improved two percent from last year, with 20 of the 32 brands improving their vehicles during that time.

Will electric cars be the cars of the future? ›

Electric vehicles are the future! The manufacturing companies are putting more effort into moving from traditional vehicles to electric cars. There are plenty of benefits to owning an electric vehicle with the right amount of functionality and infrastructure.

What will replace electric cars? ›

As the future of automotive power heads away from the internal combustion engine toward electric vehicle technology, the industry has two options: fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs), vehicles that use hydrogen as the fuel source, and battery electric vehicles (BEVs), vehicles that rely solely on battery power or ...

Is there a future for electric cars? ›

What year will everyone be driving electric cars? It is predicted thatIin 2025, 20% of all new global car sales will be electric, in 2030 this will jump to 40%. By 2040, mostly all cars sold across the world will be electric, according to forecasting by investment bank UBS.

How many Chrysler airflows are left? ›

Jay Leno's pride and joy, a first-year Chrysler Airflow Imperial CX is a LeBaron-bodied six-seater built on a 137.5-inch wheelbase, and one of the only three surviving CXs today.

How does the Chrysler turbine engine work? ›

Of the Detroit producers, only Chrysler seemed as serious about turbine-powered automobiles; Ford and GM put most of their turbine emphasis on trucks. Like a jet, the turbine's basic element is a wheel ringed with blades or vanes; a fuel/air mixture flows past the vanes, causing the wheel to rotate and produce power.

How much will the Chrysler Airflow? ›

For now, we estimate an MSRP in the range of $50,000 to $55,000 before applicable plug-in rebates. Barring any surprises, the Airflow may qualify for a full $7,500 federal EV tax credit as well as state incentives if approved for production.

Is Stellantis going all electric? ›

We are setting the course for 100% of sales in Europe and 50% of sales in the United States to be battery electric vehicles (BEVs) by the end of this decade. And we plan to offer more than 75 battery electric vehicle models and reach global annual BEV sales of 5 million units by 2030.

Does Stellantis have electric cars? ›

AMSTERDAM – Jeep® brand, the global sport utility brand of Stellantis N.V., today announced a comprehensive plan for its next generation of fully electric 4xe vehicles as part of its sustainable transformation to become the leading electrified SUV brand in the world.

What electric vehicles does Stellantis make? ›

Stellantis debuts pure-electric Jeep, pledges new target on energy self-sufficiency. Stellantis' electric vehicle plans put it in competition with firms such as Elon Musk's Tesla as well as companies like Volkswagen, Ford, and GM.

Why did Chrysler fail? ›

Key Takeaways. Over the years, a combination of factors such as the company's attempt to scale both in the U.S. and worldwide--combined with a recession, high gas prices, falling automobile sales, and heavy international competition--pushed Chrysler to the brink of bankruptcy in 1979.

Is Chrysler going out of business? ›

The Chrysler brand, founded in 1925, could be axed in 2021. Fiat Chrysler and Europe's PSA Group meet today for a final vote on plans to merge. The move forms the world's fourth largest automaker. The Associated Press reports that they may, soon after that, vote to close the Chrysler brand.

Why did Chrysler go out of business? ›

The financial crisis in 2008 proved devastating for Detroit automakers. Chrysler laid off thousands of white-collar workers. Plant closures, shift eliminations, job cuts, and model line rationalizations were all planned. Work on future products was mostly curtailed.

What are common problems with Chrysler? ›

What are the most common Chrysler problems?
  • Electrical issues.
  • Engine problems.
  • Transmission issues and failure.
5 May 2022

Is Chrysler a reliable brand? ›

Founded in 1925 by Walter P. Chrysler, today, Chrysler is known as a “family brand of sedans and minivans.” Part of this popularity with families is due to Chrysler's 3.5-star overall reliability rating, ranking 11th out of 34 possible vehicle brands.

Which car company has the best quality control? ›

Buick is the highest-ranking brand in overall initial quality with a score of 139 PP100. Dodge (143 PP100) ranks second and Chevrolet (147 PP100) ranks third. Among premium brands, Genesis (156 PP100) ranks highest, and ranks fourth overall. Lexus (157 PP100) ranks second and Cadillac (163 PP100) ranks third.

What are the pros and cons of electric vehicles? ›

Electric cars are efficient, quiet, and torque-rich. They can also be expensive, tend to be heavy, and are plagued by a limited public charging infrastructure—something we expect will get better in the coming years.

What is the biggest challenge with electric vehicles? ›

Many challenging obstacles are facing the future of EVs. They can be summed up in six key areas: customer acceptance, charging infrastructure, chip shortages, battery shortages, reliance on rare earth materials (lithium, tin, graphite, nickel, etc.), and the ability to have multiple owners.

What is the main problem with electric cars? ›

EV owners have experienced chronic problems with the display screens, exterior door lights, failing temperature sensors, mismatched paint, and seals and weatherstripping. It's not just that these problems occur, but that they occur at a higher rate than with conventional vehicles.

Will electric cars last forever? ›

Electric cars, on the other hand, can last well over 200,000 miles. The two biggest limiting factors for an EV's lifespan are the car battery and electric motor. The motor is the least of your concerns—it's estimated to last over 400,000 miles!

Will electric cars replace gas cars in the future? ›

A recent report predicts that at the current rate, [electric cars] (https://getjerry.com/tag/electric-vehicles) will outnumber gas-powered cars by 2040! That's not the near future but for such a recent invention, it's pretty soon.

Will electric cars take over gas cars? ›

Recent studies indicate that EVs will overtake gas-powered vehicles by 2033 in many countries, and worldwide just a couple of years later.

Why should electric cars be the future? ›

Electric car manufacturing is getting increasingly popular, and its market share is likely to grow significantly. By 2022, India's GDP is predicted to increase by a staggering 25%. The best aspect is that, in addition to decreasing pollution, EVs can reduce oil imports by $60 billion by 2030.

Will electric cars replace normal cars? ›

Yes, electric cars are growing in numbers. However, for several reasons, gas- and diesel-powered vehicles will likely remain dominant for years to come and in the mix for a long time after that.

How do electric cars affect the economy? ›

EVs provide economic benefits to the state by reducing fuel costs and shifting consumption away from imported oil to more locally produced electricity sources. These fuel savings become additional disposable income that will be spent mostly in the local economy, creating additional jobs in the state.

Why did Chrysler destroy its jet cars? ›

Chrysler's turbine engine program ended in 1979, largely due to the failure of the engines to meet government emissions regulations, relatively poor fuel economy, and as a condition of receiving a government loan in 1979.

How fast was the Chrysler Airflow? ›

Performance was another selling point for the Chrylser Airflow. Out on Utah's Bonneville Salt Flats, a Series CV coupe ran -- the flying mile at 95.7 miles per hour, averaged just over 90 mph over 500 miles, and did 84.43 mph for 24 hours -- ample testimony to the car's durability, as well as its performance.

Who invented Chrysler Airflow? ›

In 1934, Carl Breer and two of his associates, Owen Skelton and Fred Zeder, created a special kind of Chrysler vehicle that would become very controversial in the auto industry. Many Americans did not like the 1934-1937 Chrysler or DeSoto Airflow automobiles.

How fast is the Chrysler Turbine? ›

It averages 107.8 mph, with a top speed of 142 mph.

What is a Chrysler Turbine Car worth? ›

It had a unique look to it, thanks to its beautiful wheels and a very well designed grille that matched the root beer color combination known as "turbine bronze" perfectly. The production cost for an individual car was estimated to be around $50,000, which amounts to over $450,000 today, after adjusting inflation.

What fuel does a Chrysler Turbine use? ›

This engine runs at up to 44,500 revolutions per minute, according to the owner's manual, and could operate using diesel fuel, unleaded gasoline, kerosene, JP-4 jet fuel, and even vegetable oil.

What electric car can go 400 miles? ›

Tesla Model S Long Range: 405 Miles

The new 'base' Model S can achieve 405 miles per charge and run a still rapid 0-60 time of just 3.1 seconds. This is Tesla's longest range option currently available.

Does more airflow mean more power? ›

The more oxygen (air) that flows into the engine, the more fuel that can be burned, and the more power the engine can make. To say it another way, assuming you mix the correct amount of fuel with the air, how much power an engine can make is dependent on airflow.

How does air flow affect a car? ›

Air flows around nearly everything on the car, so a big percentage of the car affects its aerodynamic performance. It also means that practically everything has a chance to mess up the airflow to the rear wing. Some regions of the car are far more responsive to aero modifications than others.

How Stellantis plans to avoid a shortage of EV batteries? ›

In order to prepare Stellantis' brands for success with EVs, Tavares shared that the company plans to open a battery factory in Kokomo, Indiana, in 2025. If Stellantis follows through and succeeds, the upcoming factory will join several other new EV battery factories on our shores.

Will all cars be electric in 5 years? ›

By 2035, about 45% of new car sales could be electric according to industry analysis IHS Markit. At this rate, about half of the cars on the road would be electric by 2050.

Why did cars stop being electric? ›

Better roads and discovery of cheap Texas crude oil help contribute to the decline in electric vehicles. By 1935, they have all but disappeared.

Why is no one buying electric cars? ›

Common Reasons Drivers May Avoid EVs

The most common reasons drivers avoid EVs include fear the battery will run out of charge before reaching their destination, also known as “range anxiety,” fear of too few charging stations, long charge times, and initial higher upfront vehicle costs.

Who supplies Stellantis with batteries? ›

AMSTERDAM – Stellantis N.V. and Controlled Thermal Resources Ltd. (CTR) announced today the signing of a binding offtake agreement for CTR to supply battery grade lithium hydroxide for use in Stellantis' North American electrified vehicle production.

Who is Stellantis electric partner? ›

AMSTERDAM / BRUSSELS – Stellantis N.V. and Toyota Motor Europe N.V. (TME) today announced the expansion of their existing partnership with an agreement for a new large-size commercial van, including a battery electric version.

Is Chrysler developing electric vehicles? ›

Chrysler kicks off plans to go all-electric by 2028 with debut of Airflow EV concept car. Once-prominent Chrysler plans to reinvent itself as an all-electric vehicle brand by 2028, the company announced Wednesday.

Is Chrysler making an EV? ›

In January, Chrysler revealed its plans for an all-electric future, giving us a glimpse into the company's future with its Airflow crossover concept while vowing to have a full EV lineup by 2028.

What vehicle is Chrysler bringing back? ›

The first scheduled news conference of the auto show's return to downtown Detroit on Tuesday showed a special edition model near the Spirit of Detroit statue, called the 2023 Chrysler 300C, as the brand prepares to end production of the current version of the Chrysler 300, its lone sedan offering, next year.

What will cars run on in 2050? ›

By 2050, there will be about 3 billion light-duty vehicles on the road worldwide, up from 1 billion now. At least half of them will be powered by internal combustion engines (ICE), using petroleum-based fuels.

Will Chrysler build the airflow? ›

Once-prominent Chrysler plans to reinvent itself as an all-electric auto brand by 2028, the company announced Wednesday. Those plans begin with a new crossover concept called the Chrysler Airflow that was unveiled online for the CES consumer technology show in Las Vegas.

Are Chrysler plants shutting down? ›

Both plants halt operation from August 30 to September 6, 2021. Also located in Ontario, the Brampton Assembly Plant joins Windsor and Belvidere in the temporary shut down this week.
...
Gallery: 2021 Chrysler Pacifica AWD: First Drive.
Make/ModelChrysler Pacifica Ram 1500
CategoryManufacturing / Production
30 Aug 2021

Why is Chrysler changing their name? ›

The Stellantis name origin is from Latin with a definition listed as "to brighten with stars". The motivation behind the merger was clear as both companies wanted to generate a larger fan base, build greater EV motors and technology. We know Stellantis will represent a wider brand with both companies fully united.

Is Chrysler doing well? ›

Chrysler happens to be in a group that doesn't necessarily perform well. Since 2016 and on, Fiat, Chrysler, Jeep have been on the bottom half of most reliability lists. The 2016 Jeep Renegade, Ram 2500, and Chrysler 200 have helped that reliability score stay low. The 200 is no longer in production in 2021.

What is the future of the Chrysler 300? ›

Chrysler will end production of the current generation of its full-size 300 after the 2023 model year alongside the Dodge muscle cars when Brampton Assembly Plant in Ontario closes for retooling to support an electrified platform, the Stellantis NV brand confirmed on Tuesday during the reveal of a final special edition ...

Will electric cars replace gas cars? ›

Great question! A recent report predicts that at the current rate, [electric cars] (https://getjerry.com/tag/electric-vehicles) will outnumber gas-powered cars by 2040! That's not the near future but for such a recent invention, it's pretty soon.

Will all cars become electric in the future? ›

By 2040, roughly half of the vehicles on the road will still be powered by fossil fuels, but all new vehicles sold will be EVs.

Will gas cars ever go away? ›

Cars last around 15 years, so it will take us to 2050 before we get rid of most of the gasoline-powered cars. “Drivers will be willing to wait 10 to 15 minutes to charge their cars so they can drive 200 more miles. But if they have to wait much longer, they will not be happy.”

Why is Chrysler shutting down? ›

DETROIT, Dec 17 (Reuters) - Citing a credit crisis and dwindling sales, Chrysler LLC on Wednesday said it will shut down all of its manufacturing operations, starting Dec.

Is Chrysler affected by chip shortage? ›

WASHINGTON, Oct 13 (Reuters) - Chrysler-parent Stellantis NV (STLA. MI) said on Thursday it is cutting one of three shifts at its Warren, Michigan Truck Assembly Plant because of the global semiconductor chips shortage.

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