A company doesn’t usually send out a press release to announce production of a new engine, but these days Chrysler can use all the good press it can get. And good press this most certainly is, as the new Pentastar 3.6-liter V6 marks the first real step in the rebirth of Chrysler.
The new V6 engine will significantly reduce overall costs as Chrysler will replace seven different V6 engines currently used across the company’s lineup with this one motor. Chrysler also claims it will reduce fuel consumption by at least 25 percent. Power output will also increase considerably, with 280-hp and 260 ft-lbs of torque available from the V6 when it debuts later this year in the new 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee.
Afterwards, it’s slated to arrive in the new mid-size D-Class models, mated to a six-speed Dual Dry Clutch Transmission (DDCT).
But the best news of all is confirmation that Chrysler has built the engine to be compatible with more advanced technologies, meaning that in the future it will get Fiat’s Multiair variable valve timing, direct-injection and turbocharging.
Previously it was thought this technology might only be used in pricey European models (Alfa Romeo perhaps?), but the fact that Chrysler thought to mention it speaks volumes. Perhaps, the company is looking to follow after Ford’s EcoBoost plan and bring a Turbo Pentastar V6 to market as a V8 alternative?
Official release after the jump:
Chrysler Group LLC Celebrates Production Launch of Pentastar V-6 Engine at All-new Trenton, Mich., Facility
* Governor, Wayne County Executive, Mayor and UAW join employees for celebration * All-new 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 to replace seven current V-6 engines, resulting in flexibility, efficient operations and significant cost savings to the company * Michigan becomes center of Chrysler Group’s powertrain offensive * Nearly $1 billion in powertrain investments in Michigan since 2007
Auburn Hills, Mich., Mar 19, 2010 – With Michigan Governor Jennifer M. Granholm and other local officials in attendance, Chrysler Group LLC celebrated the launch of its all-new Pentastar V-6 engine at an event today at the Trenton (Mich.) South Engine Plant (TSEP).
In addition to the Governor, Wayne County Executive Robert Ficano, Trenton Mayor Gerald Brown, UAW Chrysler Department Assistant Director Tim Bressler and other local officials joined Chrysler Group executives and Trenton South employees in recognizing the importance of the plant and the new engine in the future success of the Company.
“The Pentastar engine is a cornerstone of Chrysler’s efforts to re-invent its business model with strong, brand-focused, world-class quality products,” said Scott Garberding, Head of Manufacturing, Chrysler Group LLC. “The new Trenton South plant demonstrates the Chrysler Group’s commitment to supporting economic development in Michigan. It also acknowledges the support of the International UAW and our outstanding workforce for helping us create an engine plant that can compete with the best in the world. Their efforts will help establish Trenton South as a premier manufacturer of fuel-efficient engines in support of the Company’s future growth.”
Chrysler Group’s all-new flex-fuel Pentastar V-6 is the most advanced V-6 engine in the company’s history. This new line of V-6 engines will contribute to an overall fuel-efficiency improvement of more than 25 percent across the Chrysler, Ram Truck, Jeep® and Dodge product lineup. More refined and fuel-efficient, the Pentastar engine will ultimately replace seven current Chrysler Group V-6 engines and utilize advanced technologies from the Fiat alliance such as Multiair, direct-injection and turbocharging.
The first application of this engine will be in the all-new 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee, due out in the second quarter this year.
The start of production at Trenton South represents one piece of the Chrysler Group’s revamped powertrain strategy. In December 2009, the Company announced that it would invest $179 million in its Global Engine Manufacturing Alliance (GEMA) plant in Dundee, Mich., to produce the 1.4-liter, 16-valve Fully Integrated Robotized Engine (FIRE). Together, these two plants — with a combined investment of nearly $1 billion — position Michigan at the center of Chrysler Group’s powertrain offensive.
“With the start of production here in Trenton and the recently announced investment in Dundee, Chrysler Group has helped affirm Michigan’s position as the world’s leader in automotive innovation and excellence,” said Gov. Granholm. “These projects further demonstrate that Michigan has the competitive business climate, infrastructure and talented workforce to compete in the global marketplace.”
Chrysler Group announced a $730 million investment in the Pentastar program when it broke ground on the all-new 822,000-square-foot facility in May 2007. The plant will have an annual manufacturing capacity of more than 400,000 engines.
“Three years ago, Chrysler Group demonstrated its confidence in its workforce by investing in its powertrain operations,” said the UAW’s Bressler. “Today, the UAW members at Trenton are excited to participate in building the next generation of high quality, fuel-efficient engines for Chrysler’s great lineup of vehicles and thereby, ensuring the Company’s future success.”