Chrysler has been kind of slow in catching up with the rest of Detroit in terms of press releases for new vehicles. GM, Ford and even some of the Import brands have made headlines with cars not even hitting production for at least 2 more years. Chrysler on the other hand has remained quiet about their current product development initiatives.
With sales down more than 25 percent this year, Chrysler is in some serious need for a product revamp. Although there is little on the immediate horizon – save for an all-new Dodge Ram in 2009 – help should arrive by 2010. The Michigan automaker could launch as many as nine new models in 2010, but at least three are already penciled in.
According to Chrysler CEO Bob Nardelli, new versions of the Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger will launch in 2010, along with an unspecified Jeep model. Nardelli also hinted that a new small car was on the way, possible the result of Chrysler’s recent tie-up with Nissan. “In the pipeline for 2010: A brand new 300, a brand new Charger … a brand new Jeep, the pipeline is full, plus we have these smaller vehicles coming through partnerships and alliances,” Nardelli told the Detroit Free Press.
Although the current 300 and Charger are known for their blocky styling, look for the next-generation of the platform mates to have more fluid styling, thanks to the new leadership of design boss Ralph Gilles.
Nardelli failed to elaborate on the “brand new Jeep” for 2010, but he was probably referring to the next-generation car-based Grand Cherokee. Chrysler confirmed earlier this year that the Grand Cherokee would be switching to a car-based platform in 2010.
It remains unclear if the long-rumored Dodge Hornet will make production by 2010, but a recent tie-up with Nissan to build the new small car on the Versa platform should help aid in a speedy development.