Although still speculative, 2020 will be a major “change” year for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) in Canada. Although Canada invested $325 million in the paint shop, indicating long-term plans for Canada, final plans are yet to be announced. Current plans that impact Canada include:
- retiring the 300 Sedan by 2020
- refresh the Pacifica minivan by 2020, although a redesign isn’t planned until 2024
- launch production of an EV minivan by 202, modelled on the Portal concept vehicle.
Chrysler Portal concept vehicle:
How much of the Portal makes its way into the production electric vehicle minivan remains to be seen, but the good news is anticipated ongoing production in Canada.
The major renovation — completed in 2016 — which includes paint, assembly and body shop, makes it likely plans will go forward. Additionally, the Brampton Assembly Plant was down for five weeks for retooling, early in summer of this year. The 300 is built in the Brampton assembly plant.
Windsor Plant and the Pacifica Platform
Currently, the Caravan is built in the Windsor factory. In January of this year, at the North American International Auto Show (in Detroit), FCA’s Chief Executive Officer Sergio Marchionne made it clear to reporters that there would be a replacement for the Caravan.
“The replacement of the Caravan will be a Caravan-like vehicle,” he said. “I need another minivan. It’s going to be inline with the Pacifica architecture.” He explained that the Pacifica platform is “world class” and would be utilized beyond minivan applications. No concrete plans have been yet announced, although Windsor likely would be the beneficiary of any vehicle built on the Pacifica platform.
The Portal 2020
Chrysler has confirmed the Portal for 2020, a fully electric compact utility vehicle. It is described as “created by millennials for millennials” according to the Chrysler website:
“To create the next generation of family transportation, FCA sought the collaboration and fresh ideas of millennials working inside its design and engineering functions. Those ideas led to the Chrysler Portal concept — created by millennials for millennials.
“Millennials are a tech-savvy, environmentally-aware, cost-conscious generation. The Chrysler Portal concept is designed to respond to these needs and it explores the possibility of what a family transportation vehicle could look like for the millennial generation as their lifestyles evolve.”
The proposed specs include a DC fast charge 350 kW rechargeable battery pack good for 240 kilometres (150 miles) range within only a 20-minute charge.