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Chrysler teases upcoming outlay of SEMA cars

Wed, 15 Oct 2014 11:16:00 EST

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is hauling a multitude of modified models to the annual SEMA show in Las Vegas this November, and the company is releasing the first teasing sketches of many of them.
Unfortunately, FCA isn't giving many solid details on any of the concepts other than saying the vehicles from Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram and Fiat all benefit from tuning from its Mopar performance brand. The teaser photos include a sinister-looking Chrysler 200S, Fiat 500 Abarth with two-tone paint and a scorpion on the hood, a red and black 500L, seemingly two different takes on the Jeep Renegade, a green Dodge Challenger wearing the T/A badge, an orange and black Dart, a very neon Charger, just the outline of a red and black Viper, a Ram ProMaster in Mopar livery and a Ram pickup called the Outdoorsman.
Take a look through the gallery to see what you think of the sketches for these concepts, and scroll down for the full announcement from FCA.

Fiat already planning 500X Abarth performance crossover

Wed, 15 Oct 2014 08:01:00 EST

Fiat may treat Abarth as a trim level on the 500 in the United States, but overseas it's a bona fide performance brand. The thing is that, since the demise of the Punto Abarth (and with performance versions of the Panda and 500L ruled out), the Scorpion marque has been reduced to tuning only versions of the standard Cinquecento. But that could be about to change.
The latest reports indicate that Fiat is leaning heavily towards an Abarth version of the new 500X crossover: "The 500X is a good body for Abarth," Fiat designer Roberto Giolti said to "It's absolutely perfect in terms of drivability, control. The driving seat is perfectly measured to control the car. So the Abarth would be perfect." That may fall short of an out-and-out confirmation, but strikes us as a warm endorsement from a company insider if we've ever seen one.
Revealed less than two weeks ago at the Paris Motor Show, the new 500X will be available with engines ranging from 110 horsepower all the way up to 184 with the 2.4-liter Tigershark four. Given that the 500 Abarth hatchback already offers 160 hp and that the 500X is considerably larger, it would require a bit more punch, along with a tighter suspension, beefed-up brakes and more aggressive styling inside and out.

This Fiat 500 covered in human hair is a world record holder

Thu, 09 Oct 2014 19:02:00 EST

Are you the type of person picks up little pieces of lint or hair in your car to keep things clean? If so, then this Fiat 500 in Italy might just drive you insane. An Italian women and her classic Fiat 500 have received two Guinness World Records for creating the world's hairiest car.
Maria Lucia Mugno grabbed her first record in 2010 after she covered her Fiat in 220 pounds (100 kilograms) of human hair, according to Guinness. But apparently that wasn't enough, because she recently set a new milestone by increasing the car's tresses to 265 pounds (120kg). It reportedly took 150 hours to create her follicle Fiat art car.
Covering your vintage Fiat in human hair would certainly be odd enough, but the story takes an even weirder turn. According to World Car Fans, Mugno reportedly imports the locks from India because the hair there is supposedly stronger than what's available from Europeans. We just hope that the stuff is getting washed somewhere in the process.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles gets officially official this Sunday

Thu, 09 Oct 2014 09:31:00 EST

Want a chunk of the new Fiat Chrysler Automobiles? Shares of the newly joined (technically) Dutch automaker will begin trading on Monday on the New York Stock Exchange. The company itself will become a single entity on Sunday.
According to The Detroit Free Press, the new FCA will be the world's seventh largest company after Fiat shareholders' chance to oppose the merger expired on October 4. To prevent the merger, shareholders would have needed to exchange at least 500 million euros in shares for cash.
On Monday, current shareholders of both Fiat and Chrysler stock will see their shares converted into an equal number of FCA shares, the Freep reports.

Marchionne to take his sweater and go home after 2018

Wed, 08 Oct 2014 11:31:00 EST

The end is in sight for Fiat Chrysler boss Sergio Marchionne, who confirmed in an interview with Bloomberg that once FCA's sweeping five-year plan is completed, he'd be stepping down from his post to "undoubtedly" do something else that didn't involve turning around global corporations. That would mean he should finish up after 2018 if all goes according to plan.
"It's as important to walk away from the table as it is to sit down," Marchionne told Bloomberg.
Marchionne has been at Fiat since June of 2004 and is one of the chief architects behind the Italian company's acquisition of Chrysler. Despite his successes, he does sound quite ready to move beyond the auto industry, rhetorically asking his Bloomberg interviewers if there "are other things I like to do apart from this?"

Fiat 500X takes the blue pill

Mon, 06 Oct 2014 20:01:00 EST

The Fiat 500 keeps getting bigger. Ron Arad aptly pointed out that much with his special-edition hatchback, but even in its modern incarnation, it just keeps growing: from the three-door hatch to the five-seat 500L, the ruggedized 500L Trekking, the seven-seat 500L Living and now the long-awaited 500X. Sure, it may be smaller than most crossovers, but it's positively huge by Cinquecento standards - a good third larger than the original whose spirit it embodies.
So how did Fiat make it grow? We'll give you a hint, Morpheus: it didn't take the red pill. As if it doesn't itself know, Fiat puts forward this possible explanation that's worth a watch... if you can make it through the first borderline-NSFW scene without puking. All we'll say is that the sexual suggestiveness of the 500 Abarth ad with Catrinel Menghia was a bit more palatable.

Fiat 500X scampers across the Alps

Thu, 02 Oct 2014 17:20:00 EST

It's been a long time coming, but it's finally here. It's the new Fiat 500X: the rounder, somehow even more retro version of the Jeep Renegade. Joining an ever-expanding Cinquecento lineup alongside the 500, 500C and 500L, the new 500X is - to our eyes at least - the most handsome yet... better looking, at any rate, than the somewhat ungainly Mini Countryman. But despite its more fluid lines, the new 500X is barely any longer than the Renegade and only slightly less tall.
Taking the place of the previous Suzuki-based Sedici, Fiat will offer the new 500X in two versions (one more cosmopolitan, the other more rugged), with three transmissions, three traction systems and a whole mess of different engines. The list starts with a 1.4-liter turbo four with 140 horsepower and a 1.6-liter diesel with 120 hp, later to be joined by a 1.6-liter with 110 hp, a more powerful 1.4-liter turbo with 170 hp and finally the 2.4-liter Tigershark engine with 184 hp. Gearboxes will include 5- and 6-speed manuals and - in a Fiat first - a nine-speed automatic, driving the front wheels (with our without traction control) or all four.
Buyers will also be able to choose between 12 exterior colors, seven interior combinations and eight wheel designs ranging from 16 inches to 18, adding up to a long list of configurations to give the 500X the same kind of mass-customization options that have made its stablemate so successful. The 500X will be manufactured in Melfi, Italy, alongside its Jeep counterpart and will eventually reach over 100 markets around the world - including North America.

Fiat observes Paris Fashion Week with 500 Couture special edition

Wed, 01 Oct 2014 14:01:00 EST

The Paris Motor Show may be where the bulk of new cars will be presented this week in the French capital, but it's not the only place. Fiat has chosen the swank Champs Elysées to unveil a trio of special-edition Cinquecento models as part of Fashion Week.
The first in the 500 Couture line will be the Fiat 500 Ron Arad Edition, born out of a collaboration with the noted Israeli fashion designer. As you can see above, it features a metallic black paint job emblazoned with the silhouette of the original Cinquecento, showing just how much bigger the current 500 is than its progenitor. It also features a glass sunroof, chrome trim, white mirror caps, 16-inch alloys and a black interior with Poltrona Frau leather and all the fixin's.
The 500 Ron Arad edition is joined by the 500 Comics and 500 Camouflage show cars, the former with a vibrant yellow and black paint job and stitching graphics, the latter with a gray/green treatment with bright yellow mirror caps. See 'em all in the image gallery above.

Fiat Doblo Cargo is an Italian Ram Promaster City

Sat, 27 Sep 2014 15:03:00 EST

Meet the new Fiat Doblò Cargo, the Italian cousin of the recently debuted Ram ProMaster City. As part of the Fiat Professional line, we wouldn't count on seeing this one on US shores, but as Fiat Chrysler's compact cargo entry in Europe, expect to see plenty of the mini haulers across the pond following its debut at the Hanover Motor Show.
This isn't a full-tilt redesign for the Doblò Cargo, so much as it is a significant refresh that sees the compact cargo van adopt a new, more stylish front fascia, which borrows inspiration from the larger Ducato van, sold Stateside as the Ram ProMaster. While it's not terribly handsome, it is a major improvement on the awkward looks of the pre-facelift Doblò. Its links with the ProMaster City, meanwhile, are plain to see.
Unlike North America's ProMaster City, which runs on Chrysler's 2.4-liter, Tigershark four-cylinder, the Doblò Cargo is available with a pair of diesel engines; a 90-horsepower, 1.3-liter and a 105-hp, 1.6-liter. While those two mills are sure to be easy on fuel costs, they can be made even better thanks to an optional stop-start system. These so-called "EcoJet" engines can return up to 64 miles per gallon, according to Fiat.

Fiat 500X teased in creepy new video

Mon, 22 Sep 2014 19:00:00 EST

Fiat is bringing a new variant of its 500 family to the 2014 Paris Motor Show, and as its debut approaches, the tempo of teaser releases is increasing. Earlier this month, we showed you heavily blurred video of the new 500X from a variety of angles. Today, we have a pretty strange spot that actually gives us some unobscured looks at the new compact crossover.
The odd teaser shows a woman on a swing in an abandoned city. If that's not odd enough, she's reciting the ABCs in the sort of sing-song manner generally reserved for possessed children in horror films. Then the 500X arrives.
While we do get a full look at the car's face, the majority of styling cues that we can see don't reveal much that we didn't know. The fascia isn't too dissimilar from the 500L, aside from its soft-road styling features, while the tail boasts a wide set of vertical taillights.