Posted Jun 5th 2012 11:00AM
Chrysler has gotten on pretty well in the post-bankruptcy world, with a big assist from its newest master. But while Chrysler has seen dramatic improvement thanks to refreshes and a few new models, the next couple years could be very exciting.
Automobile Magazine recently got the chance to talk cars with CEO Sergio Marchionne, and the charismatic leader apparently had plenty to say. Among the top headlines are the reported upcoming death of the Dodge Avenger in 2014 and Dodge Durango in 2016. We're thinking nobody will miss the Avenger, but the Durango sounds like a bit of a bummer.
That's until we see that the Durango will be replaced by a Jeep Wagoneer; a rehash of an old name based on the same platform and engine choices of the Dodge three-row utility. The Durango platform will also spawn the Maserati Kubang (which will likely be named something else), a move that should go a long way toward helping Maserati hit 50,000 units per year.
The Wagoneer is just the tipping point for new Jeeps on the way. Among the other models expected are an all-new Liberty in 2013 followed by a new Patriot in 2014 and a Fiat 500-based subcompact crossover tentatively named Jeepster.
The Chrysler brand should also look a bit more interesting as the 200 gets re-imagined for 2013 and the Town & Country morphs into a crossover in 2015. The Chrysler brand will reportedly also get a Dodge Dart-based 100 compact, but not until 2016 or later, which seems like a long way off.
Among the other interesting vehicles expected to bow are as many as six Alfa Romeo models including the 4C Coupe, the next MiTo, the Giulietta and an unnamed crossover. And then there will be a smattering of new Fiat 500 models including the 500L and the XL, which will reportedly feature seating for up to seven.
The SRT lineup will also be getting a sheetmetal injection with the addition of the Dart SRT4 and the Journey SRT6. Now if Sergio Marchionne can make the Journey exciting, he'll be up for auto executive of the decade!