It’s official: FCA (Fiat Chrysler Automobiles) CEO Sergio Marchionne officially confirmed what many car experts have been speculating for some time. The Giorgio platform from Alfa Romeo will be the base for some upcoming Jeeps. This platform can currently be found on the Giulia and Stelvio models, and many reviewers go crazy about how good it is. This confirmation was made by Marchionne on January 26th during a conference call with analysts, reports Automotive News. So, it seems legit. During that call, the automotive world also gained insight into the fact that this platform shift for Jeep had been planned all along.
The question is: Why?
Thankfully, that simple question has a simple answer. Moving some of the new Jeep models over to this Giorgio platform is meant to help spread the cost of developing the platform and the vehicles based on it.
Marchionne had this to say about the move: “The investment in Alfa Romeo and certainly the technical investment in the architecture was something that was designed to benefit more than Alfa,” he stated. “I’m happy that we have finally found clarity of thought in the extension of these architectures well beyond Alfa.”
Clearly, Marchionne is excited about the move for the Jeep models. But, what vehicles will you find on the new platform? Certainly FCA wouldn’t risk ruining the Wrangler’s exceptional off-road capability by tampering with a 75 year-old design. But, I can see any of the others being fair game.
Marchionne confirmed this for the automotive world, by stating that the platform would be used for large models. Before, it was reported that FCA was looking into using the Giorgio platform for the next-gen Grand Cherokee. While that speculation looks to be turning into a reality, Marchionne said the Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer models would be built atop a body-on-frame platform like traditional SUVs. That platform would be borrowed from the next-gen Ram pickup.
Therefore, currently we still don’t know for sure what Jeep vehicles will share the Alfa platform. Since Marchionne said that the Giorgio platform is reserved for larger Jeep models, that most likely targets the next-gen Grand Cherokee.
It’s Not Just Jeep
On a related note, it’s not just Jeep that’s going to benefit from the Giorgio platform. Marchionne also confirmed that it will enhance Maserati and Dodge models as well. With Maserati in particular benefiting the most from this platform, given that the entire range of next-generation models — or the “whole Maserati development beyond 2018” as Marchionne projected — will be built on the Giorgio platform.
For Dodge, Marchionne was also vague on what particular models will get the Giorgio treatment. But, he did say it will be used for rear-wheel-drive vehicles. That’s quite easy to figure out, and it will most likely be the next-generation Challenger and Charger because they’re two of the best RWD models currently sold by Dodge.
FCA Is Excited, But Should We Be?
I’d say it’s still too soon to tell. Especially for those who don’t follow car news too closely, this information could just end up going in one ear and right out the other. Therefore, let’s reserve judgement for when we actually see how some of these Jeep and other models handle on the Giorgio platform, capisce?