AutoGuide News Blog
The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
With Italy as one of its main markets, it’s no surprise that the Fiat Group would bring a huge collection of new and special edition models to the Bologna Motor Show. This year, the Fiat Group will headline the local auto show with a new 2012 Fiat Sedici model, a Fiat 500 Nation Limited Edition, a Fiat TwinAir 500, a Fiat 500C by Gucci, a Lancia Ypsilon Black&Red, an Abarth 595 turismo, 595 competizione, 695 Assetto Corse, and a Punto scorpione.
Fiat’s Sedici receives a minor facelift for 2012, six years after its initial launch. It’ll be available in three different trim levels, Dynamic, Emotion and Experience, with two engine options, a 1.6L 120-hp and a 2.0L 135-hp MultiJet diesel. Both models can be purchased with front-wheel-drive or selectable all-wheel-drive. Updates to the Sedici’s exterior includes a new color option (Rebellious Purple), painted roof rails and 16-inch wheels for the Experience model.
We’ve already seen Fiat’s 500C by Gucci, and the Fiat 500 Nation Limited Edition, so we’ll turn our attention to the four Abarth special editions that’ll be making an appearance. The new Abarth 595 will be making its world premiere in Bologna in two forms, the turismo and competizione, with the turismo targeted towards personality and comfort while the competizione is built for the racing purist.
Both Abarth 595 models will be powered by a 1.4L Turbo T-Jet powerplant with 160-hp and 170 lb-ft of torque in Sport mode. The turismo model sports a two-tone paint job and the vehicle on display at Bologna will feature Fiat’s Rosso Officina and Grigio Pista accented by a white liner. Turismo graphics are a finishing touch alongside the 17-inch titanium-colored wheels.
On the competizione model, Abarth outfitted the 595 with a five-speed manual transmission, metallic Grigio Record scheme with 17-inch titanium-colored wheels. Behind each race-styled wheel are yellow Brembo brake calipers. The interior further lends the racing spirit to the car with Abarth Corsa by Sabelt leather and alcantara seats. Both 595s also have customization suspension kits and brakes available as options.
The Abarth 695 Assetto Corse has been designed for track racing, and features an aggressive front-end design with a complete aerodynamic spoiler and screen-printed grilles. In the rear of the car is a winged spoiler and twin exhaust pipe. Under the hood is a 205-hp 1.4L turbocharged powerplant while 17-inch racing wheels puts the power to the ground. The interior features all the safety equipment required by FIA regulations including a roll-bar welded to the body. The side windows have been lightened thanks to the use of Lexan, making it 66-lbs lighter than the previous 500 Assetto Corse.
The last of the Abarth models is the Punto scorpione, a limited edition model with just 99 vehicles being made. A two-tone Nero Scorpione paint scheme is further contrasted with a special matte black paintwork on the hood and roof. Under the hood is a 1.4L MultiAir engine with 180-hp and 199 lb-ft of torque. Braking performance is enhanced with four-piston yellow brake calipers while the suspension features front and rear Koni shock absorbers and specially lowered springs.
Lastly, the Fiat Group will be introducing a Black&Red edition of the Lancia Ypsilon coming in four different color choices, two reds, a black and a two-tone black and red scheme. Other the hood is a 1.2L 69-hp engine or a 95-hp 1.3L turbo diesel.
GALLERY: Special Edition Abarths
GALLERY: 2012 Fiat Sedici
GALLERY: Fiat 500 Nation Limited Edition
GALLERY: Lancia Ypsilon Black&Red Edition
Chrysler has launched their first two re-badged Lancia product in the UK (where the Lancia brand has been defunct for a number of years), with a pair of hatchbacks based on the Lancia Delta and Ypsilon compact and subcompact cars.
The Ypsilon shares a platform with the Fiat 500 and will be available with the 900cc TwinAir two-cylinder turbocharged engine, as well as a 1.2L 4-cylinder and a 1.3L diesel engine. The Delta is about the size of a Ford Focus and can be optioned with either 1.4L, 1.6L or 2.0L engines.
Hit the jump to see the official press release
Gallery: Lancia Delta & Ypsilon
Lancia’s version of the Chrysler 200, likely dubbed the Flavia, will debut at the Geneva Auto Show in March. While the idea of a Lancia-badged Chrysler is unpalatable to many enthusiasts, the fact that Chrysler has decided use the much vilified 200 will surely make it the automotive equivalent of the Antichrist.
Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne rubbed salt in the wounds of Italian car fans everywhere with his announcement, also confirming that the 200 convertible will be a part of the Lancia lineup. The Flavia will get a new front end, a diesel engine and a manual transmission as part of its adaptation for Europe.
Brighter news for Lancia comes with the announcement that the Chrysler 300 will be sold as the Lancia Thema, and the new Lancia Ypsilon will be based off the highly lauded Fiat Panda. A 5-door version will also be offered for the first time in the car’s history.
[Source: Automotive News]
Get AutoGuide’s complete 2011 Geneva Auto Show preview here.
Fiat will look to reinvent its struggling Lancia brand at the Geneva Auto Show, breathing some life into the marque by unveiling its new flagship luxury sedan.
Rather than an all-new vehicle or some small European-style model, the new Lancia luxo-barge (rumored to be called Thema) will be a direct result of Fiat’s takeover of Chrysler. That being said, the Thema will actually be a rebadged version of the Chrysler 300. Hardly a volume model, Fiat hopes to sell 10,000 to 15,000 units in Europe, using the car as a way to boost the brand’s image.
Power for the Thema will come from a 230-hp 3.0-liter V6 turbodiesel, and while that’s likely to be the most popular engine choice, Lancia will also offer both the V6 and V8 engines available in North America.
In addition to the Thema, Lancia will also unveil a new version of its Ypsilon model, which will be offered as both a five-door and three-door, with the new model expected to help grow the brand’s overall sales from 112,000 last year to 300,00 in 2014.
[Source: Automotive News]
Last week Fiat/Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne set out a long-winded plan for the future of the American automaker and how its future will be closely tied to its new Italian parent company. There was a lot to digest at the seven hour press conference and so we thought a model by model breakdown would be helpful and would shed some light on what appears to be the general plan to eliminate old Chrysler products and replace them with new Chrysler Group-branded Fiat models. So let’s start with Dodge…
From the smallest to the largest vehicles, Dodge will see the introduction of a subcompact car in 2013 based on the Alfa Romeo MiTo. Currently Dodge does not offer a sub-compact with its smallest offering being the compact Caliber, which receives a mild update this year but will be eliminated in 2012 and then replaced the same year by a Fiat Group-based vehicle. Presumably it will be another Alfa Romeo platform, however, the car will be built in the U.S.
Moving to the mid-size segment, the Avenger will also be updated for 2010 and then replaced by a Fiat Group platform in 2013.
The future for the Journey, Grand Caravan and Charger is more positive, with the Journey and Grand Caravan getting updates for 2010 with a new Grand Caravan due in 2014. The Charger will be all-new for 2011 with a new interior and exterior, after originally launching in 2006. A new rear suspension will also be part of the package. As for its Challenger sibling, it will be updated for the 2012 model year.
Two vehicles that will be eliminated are the Nitro and Viper, with the Nitro slated to be scraped in 2011 (with a possible successor), while the Viper will cease production mid next year with a potential sports car replacing it in 2012.
One new model will be added to the Dodge lineup; a seven-seater crossover based on the new 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee (pictured above).
The new Ram brand still won’t have a lot going on, although Fiat is looking to expand its offerings. The Dakota is scheduled to cease production late in 2011 with a possible unibody pickup to replace it. As for the Ram 1500, it will get a mid-cycle refresh in 2012, as will the heavy duty Ram trucks. A chassis cab version of the Ram will also arrive in 2010.
Two additions to the lineup include a front-drive small work van and full-sized van in 2012. The small van will be similar in purpose to Ford’s Transit Connect and will be based on the next-generation Fiat Doblo. It will be imported from either Turkey or Brasil. As for Ram’s new full-sized van offering, it will be one of two vehicles: either the body-on frame Iveco Daily or the unibody Fiat Ducato. Unlike the small van, this full-sized unit will be assembled in the U.S.
Starting in the small scale, the Chrysler Brand will also get a subcompact, although (surprisingly) it will not be based on the same Alfa Romeo vehicle as the Dodge sub-compact. Instead, it will be underpinned by the next-generation Lancia Ypsilon five-door hatch and will go on sale in 2013.
A new compact sedan (based on a Fiat Group platform) will be launched in 2012. It is not clear if the Fiat Group platform is the same one that will underpin the Dodge compact sedan. The same can be said for the Sebring, which, like its current Dodge counterpart (the Avenger) will get styling updates next year and be replaced by a Fiat Group platform in 2013.
As for the PT Cruiser, it will be eliminated late next year – although we’ve heard that one before.
The Chrysler 300, like the Dodge Charger, will be all-new for 2011 with the new model arriving some time next year. Styling is expected to be evolutionary, so don’t expect much change – which is probably a good thing.
And as for Chrysler’s final product, the Town & Country minivan, it will get updates next year with a new model in 2014. Fiat hopes to differentiate the Chrysler minivan from its Dodge counterpart by taking it more up-market. (Have we learned nothing from the R-Class?)
Finally, there’s the Jeep brand, where we’ve already learned the Patriot, Compass and Commander will be eliminated over the next few years. The first to meet the scrap heap is the Commander, with production ending late next year, while the Patriot and Compass will be get mild updates for 2010 before being retired in 2012. Interestingly, Fiat may build and sell the Commander overseas after 2010.
At the low end of the spectrum, a new subcompact SUV will arrive in 2013 based on the next generation Fiat Panda Cross, while a new compact crossover will arrive the same year based on an unnamed Fiat Group platform. A new Liberty will also arrive that year, again based on a Fiat.
As for Jeep’s core vehicles, the Wrangler will get a new interior next year, with a new engine offered in 2011. The Grand Cherokee will continue on as planned with the new model debuting next year as a 2011 model.
[Source: Automotive News]