2014 Jeep Liberty To debut with New 3.2-liter Pentastar V6 in January
Chrysler Group plans to produce a smaller version of its 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine, probably at a plant in suburban Detroit, according to a union official and a source familiar with the project. The newly designed vehicle is expected to debut at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show in January as per the reliable sources.
Bruce Baumhower, president of UAW Local 12 in Toledo, Ohio, where the Liberty replacement will be assembled, said the vehicle is expected to feature a 3.2-liter V-6 Pentastar and a nine-speed transmission. The transmission was developed by ZF Friedrichshafen AG, which offers the eight-speed transmission for the Dodge Charger and Chrysler 300 sedans. Even though there are no more details about the horsepower or fuel economy figures, it is expected that the Jeep is going to make a very serious effort to capture the best-in-class fuel economy title with this new vehicle – something not usually connected with the rugged off-road-minded Jeep brand.
Work has started on a $500 million reformation to the Toledo North Assembly plant to produce the successor to the Liberty. The plant will close in early August for at least five months to retool for the new SUV, Baumhower said. The automaker aims to enhance its corporate average fuel economy, in part with new transmissions.
Besides, some hints about this forthcoming engine have been leaked directly from the lips of none other than Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne at the Geneva Motor Show.
“If we had known the eight-speed [transmission] was coming, we would have made the [3.6-liter] Pentastar a 3.2-liter [V6],” he said.
The 3.6-liter Pentastar will be available in 11 automobiles across the Chrysler Group lineup which produces between 283 and 305 hp exclusively depending on the vehicle. It comes standard on several of the automaker’s highest-selling vehicles, including the Jeep Wrangler, Chrysler Town & Country and Dodge Grand Caravan minivans, and its flagship sedans, the Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger. The Pentastar also will make its debut this year in the Ram 1500 pickup.