DETROIT — Chrysler revealed the direction of its future products on Tuesday with a new concept car called “Halcyon,” as the once prominent auto company attempts to drum up attention amid a dearth of new products.
The concept car is a sleek, future-looking sports car that’s designed to incorporate emerging technologies such as autonomous driving and new battery materials and charging capabilities for electric vehicles. It features an updated Chrysler logo as well as other design characteristics that officials say will carry over into production vehicles.
However, consumers will likely have to wait a bit to purchase a new Chrysler with such technologies or anything that potentially resembles the concept car.
Following the discontinuation last year of the Chrysler 300 sedan, the brand’s sole product is the Chrysler Pacifica minivan, including a plug-in hybrid electric model. Aside from an update to the minivan, Chrysler — owned by Stellantis, the company formed via a merger between Fiat Chrysler and French automaker PSA Group — isn’t expected to have a new vehicle until next year.
That new vehicle – a crossover, not a car – is anticipated to be Chrysler’s first all-electric vehicle, as the brand transitions to exclusively offer “a full lineup of innovative, seamlessly connected” EVs by 2028.
Chrysler CEO Christine Feuell, who started leading the brand in September 2021, said the company expects to roll out such a lineup of vehicles “in quick succession” after the EV crossover next year.
She said Chrysler’s parent companies did not invest in the brand “for a very long time.”
“I would always love to have more and faster, but I can tell you that over the last few years, we’ve not only grown sales, we’ve improved the profitability of the brand significantly,” Feuell said.
She said despite slower-than-expected adoption of the EV sales in the U.S., the company remains on track for its transition.
Feuell said the brand, which sold roughly 144,000 vehicles last year in the U.S. and Canada, “made a very good profit” in 2023. Those earnings will assist in funding the future vehicles inspired by the Halcyon concept, she said.
Automakers routinely use concept vehicles to gauge customer interest or show the future direction of a vehicle or brand. The vehicles are not meant to be sold to consumers.
The Halcyon concept car boasts “harmony in motion” and sustainability principles, according to several officials. The vehicle is built on one of Stellantis’ next-generation EV platforms. It includes synthetic materials rather than leather; 45% glass surface exterior; and utilizes 95% sustainable interior materials, including crushed compact discs, or CDs, as the Chrysler logo at the entryway of the vehicle.
The car is the latest concept from Chrysler following a minivan-like “Portal” vehicle in 2017, Airflow crossover in 2022 and “Synthesis Cockpit” demonstrator in 2023.
The Halcyon was scheduled to be revealed at the CES tech trade show in January, however Stellantis canceled those plans as well as other events to save capital.
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