Chrysler has stated its first full battery electric vehicle will be launched before 2025 ahead of the premium American brand going fully electric by 2028.
Confirmation of Chrysler’s all-electric future “transformation” was made at the unveiling of the Airflow Concept at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, a model that also previews a new design language and a heavily automated drive that “reinvents the customer experience.”
“The Chrysler Airflow Concept represents the future direction of the Chrysler brand, providing a peek at the dynamic design, advanced technologies and seamless connectivity that will characterize the full-electric portfolio we plan to reach by 2028,” Chrysler CEO Chris Feuell explains in an official statement. “Our brand will serve at the forefront as Stellantis transforms to deliver clean mobility and connected customer experiences.”
“The Chrysler Airflow Concept represents the start of the brand’s journey toward a fully electrified future,” chief design officer Ralph Gilles continues. “The design features a decisively elegant aerodynamic exterior and a modern, sophisticated interior that takes the customer on a new level of digital delight.”
Built atop parent company Stellantis’ EV-specific ‘STLA’ platform, the Airflow features two 150 kW / 201 hp electric motors that drive each axle. Mounted further forward than usual, this creates more space in the cabin and also opens the door for larger electric-drive modules to be incorporated into the drivetrain in the future. While Chrysler has not specified the size of the battery, the estimated range is anywhere between 350 and 400 miles (around 563 to 643 kilometres).
Perhaps of greater significance though is the technology package showcased within the Airflow. ‘STLA Brain’ is the electric architecture on which the concept’s electrical systems are built, and through which ‘over the air’ updates can be received – akin to the latest software update for your smartphone and the latest version of your laptop’s operating system – to increase the vehicle’s lifespan. The STLA SmartCockpit is built on this electronic platform, and provides individual screens for each occupant, which “enables an extension of digital, work and home environments.” Basically, the system makes sending an email or making your next Amazon purchase that much easier when you’re on the move.
The third and final interconnected system is STLA AutoDrive, which is said to offer Level 3 autonomous driving capabilities. This allows drivers to take their eyes off the road and their hands off the wheel for prolonged periods of inactivity like the highway. Suddenly the screens for “all occupants” mentioned above is less alarming!
The final notable element of the Airflow is the new design language, built around a low ride height, a long wheelbase and wide stance, and a streamlined panoramic roof. In a direction that pays tribute to original 1934 Chrysler Airflow, the concept was specifically designed with low aerodynamic drag using a wind tunnel. Notable elements of the design include the 22-inch wheels, the Arctic White paint, the body-width LED taillight, and Chrysler’s wing logo incorporated into the LED lightblade at the front.