The Chrysler Airflow concept has officially been unveiled at last, and marks the company’s first step to becoming an all-electric brand by 2028.
According to Chrysler, today’s concept shows the brand is on track to launch its first EV in 2025. Although the Airflow concept looks almost production ready, Chrysler stopped short of confirming the concept will be heading into production
Riding on a dedicated EV platform, the Airflow has a 150kW motor located on each axle. No details about the battery pack have been revealed, but Chrysler claims the Airflow will have a range of between 560km and 645km.
The Airflow concept also serves as a rolling showcase of the automaker’s technology platforms, and is said to feature a Level 3 autonomous driving system.
Inside the cabin there are touchscreens accessible to each outboard passenger. With standard internet connectivity, each display is said to deliver a personalised experience that extends home and work accounts into the vehicle.
Over-the-air software updates are, naturally, part of the package.
Should the Airflow concept go into production and retain its current name, it will revive a badge that went out of production in 1937.
Made for just three short years, the Airflow was a commercial failure, but is now regarded as a design and engineering icon.
The original Airflow broke new ground with its monocoque construction, and wind tunnel-optimised body. Its unusual-for-the-time proportions allowed passengers to sit comfortably within the car’s wheelbase, and meant the engine could be placed near the front axle.
Chrysler also used its CES presentation to reveal it will be an EV-only brand by 2028, indicating the current Pacifica people mover will soldier on until then.
Walter P Chrysler’s namesake brand is the first American brand in the Stellantis portfolio to commit to a future without internal combustion engines.
In Europe, DS and Lancia will become electric-only brands starting from 2024, while Alfa Romeo will join them in 2027. Of the mainstream marques, Opel and Vauxhall plan to offer EVs only on the Continent by 2028.
At present Chrysler only has two models in its showrooms: the Pacifica, and the 300 sedan.
The Pacifica was introduced in 2016, and is available with a 3.6-litre V6, as well as a plug-in hybrid drivetrain featuring the same V6 engine. It’s likely the people mover will undergo a deep facelift before it is axed or replaced in 2028.
As for the 300, it will likely be retrenched in 2023, well before the brand’s EV switchover. Launched in 2011 with V6 and V8 options, in the US the big Chrysler has always lived in the shadow of its Dodge siblings, which had sportier styling and higher performance options.
The 300 was recently axed from the Stellantis’ Australian lineup, meaning the Chrysler brand has been withdrawn from the local market again.