In an effort to curb spending, improve fuel economy and simplify its manufacturing process Chrysler introduced a new 3.6-liter “Pentastar” V6 engine several years ago, with a plan that it would replace up to seven other V6 engines.
With that plan now mostly complete, the next stage in development is to down-size that engine, with a new report that the next generation Jeep Liberty will receive a 3.2-liter version of that powerplant. Also expected as a part of the mix is a new 9-speed automatic transmission, which will help maximize the power available by the smaller displacement engine to help deliver performance that is on par with the larger engine, but with improved fuel economy..
Making anywhere from 283 to 305 hp, depending on the application, look for the 3.2-liter unit to deliver around 250 hp. Previously, Chrysler-Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne had said the company was planning a smaller displacement version of the Pentastar V6 using Fiat’s Multi-Air variable valve timing technology, which uses hydraulic pumps rather than a cam on the intake side. While it isn’t yet clear if that technology will be used in this current version, if it is, power output could be closer to the 3.6-liter version, with improved fuel economy.
Look for the new Jeep Liberty to debut at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show next January.