Chrysler Airflow is not going into production, confirms company

At the Stellantis EV Day 2021 last July, the company teased its first Chrysler crossover electric vehicle for a few seconds. This was a more realistic concept derived from the Airflow Vision concept FCA introduced at the CES 2020. At the Stellantis Software Day 2021 in December 2021, the company revealed the name of this concept – Chrysler Airflow. Now, as part of its CES 2022 announcements, Stellantis has formally unveiled the electric SUV as the Chrysler Airflow Concept to showcase of its new technologies.

Before you get your hopes up, we’ll mention that Chrysler has announced that there is no production plan for this SUV:

While the Airflow is a true concept vehicle, and not destined for production, it showcases our leading-edge electrified drive system technology that delivers up to 400 miles of range and fast-charging functionality. It includes advanced safety technologies that are true to Chrysler’s safety heritage and leadership and also includes intuitive A.I. and connected vehicle technology, because the future isn’t simply about making vehicles move from point A to point B.

Chris Feuell, CEO, Chrysler (Chrysler Airflow Concept reveal on January 6, 2022)

Exterior

The Chrysler Airflow Concept is an electric SUV coupe, which if made, would have competed with the Tesla Model Y and the Ford Mustang Mach-E. Its silhouette is similar to that of the Ford Evos that is designed for the Chinese market. However, it’s completely original, and further advancement of the Airflow Vision concept. Like that design study, it has an athletic profile and expresses a dramatic character.

The front bumper and headlights of the EV instantly highlight its connection to the classic Airflow Vision. LED light blades right below the headlamps flank the Chrysler logo. The faux upper and lower grilles seem to feature a diamond pattern, and the fog lamp section houses three stepped LED light modules.

The Airflow Concept gets a short front overhang and literally nil rear overhang. With the wheels situated far out at the corners, it could have the longest wheelbase possible for the length of the car. This way, it can offer the most spacious cabin for its exterior dimensions. The floating roof, hunched tail section, slim mirrors, and sleek greenhouse lend it a sporty stance and usher in a new look for Chrysler. Flush door handles would reduce aero drag while also giving it an upscale styling. A squarish cover hides the charging port located on the left front fender.

The steeply raked windscreen and the wider body below it give the Airflow Concept a dramatic stance. An end-to-end single-piece tail light accentuates the electric SUV’s width.

Interior

The Chrysler Airflow Concept’s interior also takes after the Airflow Vision concept’s design. This similarity is clearly evident in parts that define a vehicle’s interior, including the dashboard, center console, steering wheel, and door panels.

The interior has minimalist vibes and a high level of digitalization, typical of high-end EVs. A ‘squircle’ two-spoke steering sits in front of the instrument cluster. A bridge-type console between the front seats connects the dashboard, and it houses a rotary dial, which should be the electronic gear selector. A giant panoramic roof lets in plenty of natural light. Moreover, it gives a great sense of space, offering a grand view of the sky.

The Airflow really what it represents is a third space, and customers are no longer looking for just a product to get them from point A to point B. They’re really looking for this kind of connected hub that allows their digital travel lifestyle to travel with them. And this is all real, this isn’t just a concept, this is something we’re looking to bring to the market soon.

Vince Galante, Director – User Experience, Stellantis (Stellantis Software Day 2021 on December 7, 2021)

Software actually controls almost the entire occupant experience in the vehicle. We’re actually over-designing the hardware so that it is capable of adding new features over time.

Michael Bassier, STLA Brain Project Director, Stellantis (Stellantis Software Day 2021 on December 7, 2021)

The Chrysler Airflow Concept has six screens in total, four at the front and two at the rear. The front screens consist of a small display in the corner of the driver-side that displays the cabin temperature and possibly a few other less important details. There’s a large, fully digital instrument cluster to display the vital driving information beside it. Right in the middle of the dashboard, a larger, floating display provides the infotainment system functions. The fourth display on the extreme right allows the co-passenger to view and make changes to the navigation system, shuffle music, and more.

The two rear screens are entertainment displays for the rear passengers, but are useful for productivity, too. For example, people can use their commute time to finish a video conference call they’d otherwise have to wait for till they reach their office or home. Each seat features a built-in camera, so it’s not just the rear-seat passengers who can do participate in group video conferences.

In our Airflow, you can seamlessly join a video conference through the integrated system of cameras, displays, and audio system in the comfort and the privacy of your cabin.

Gagan Mann, Head Connectivity & Infotainment, NA Tech Center, Stellantis (Stellantis Software Day 2021 on December 7, 2021)

The Airflow Concept packs STLA AutoDrive, which enables Level 3 autonomous driving capabilities. Co-developed with BMW, STLA AutoDrive supports OTA updates. The concept model gets a digital cockpit, called STLA SmartCockpit, from Mobile Drive, a joint venture company Stellantis and Taiwanese electronics contract manufacturer Foxconn established in May 2021. In fact, the Airflow Vision design concept’s interior electronics were a result of a collaboration between the companies. The STLA SmartCockpit’s heart is a new electrical/electronic (E/E) and software architecture called STLA Brain.

The Chrysler Airflow Concept is designed as a space to bring people together, both physically and virtually, by integrating all of the latest Stellantis technologies advancements, like STLA Brain, STLA SmartCockpit and STLA AutoDrive.

Chris Feuell, CEO, Chrysler (Chrysler Airflow Concept reveal on January 6, 2022)

Stellantis sees software as a major revenue stream for EVs. The company plans to allow upgrading its EVs even after they’ve already left the assembly line. These upgrades would include both permanent and temporary upgrades. Customers would be able to enable extra connectivity functions or entertainment features for a short period of time, like when going on a road trip, and save money by not shelling out a big amount for a permanent unlock.

Mamatha Chamarthi, SVP – Software Business & Product, Stellantis, talked briefly about on-demand feature upgrades at the Stellantis Software Day 2021 event. Chamarthi showed a picture of the Chrysler Airflow Concept’s interior in her presentation and said:

Let’s talk about long road trips. The ability to customize your in-cabin experience with entertainment options like premium stereo, Wi-Fi, streaming music, or Fire TV built-in can be added easily on the fly.

Mamatha Chamarthi, SVP – Software Business & Product, Stellantis (Stellantis Software Day 2021 on December 7, 2021)

Specifications

The Chrysler Airflow Concept sports two 150 kW motors, one powering the front wheels and one powering the rear wheels. It can accommodate larger capacity motors for high-performance applications, though. The optimal location of the motors toward the front and rear of the vehicle maximizes interior space. There’s no word on the battery pack capacity, but the internal estimation for the range is 350-400 miles.

Chrysler Airflow interior infotainment teaser
The Chrysler Airflow Concept’s display shows a 400-mile range. Image Source: Stellantis/Driving

Any Chrysler midsize electric SUV that makes it to the market would sit on the STLA Large platform. It’s a new bespoke EV platform for mid-size to full-size models measuring 4.70-5.40 meters (185.0-224.4 in.) length and 1.90-2.03 meters (74.8-79.9 in.) in width.

Stellantis plans to release STLA Large platform-based EVs with battery packs having an energy content between 37 kWh and 200 kWh. The company has confirmed that these models will come with 101-118 kWh (gross/total capacity) battery packs and achieve a range of up to 500 miles. Some of them would come with 125-180 kW (168-241 hp) powertrains, but most of them would sport more powerful, 150-330 kW (201-442 hp) powertrains.

The STLA Large platform has outstanding fundamentals, with the batteries nice and low, the EDM motors at the edges, allowing for a variety of wheel sizes, suspension heights, and widths. All of these components are out of the way, allowing us to do just about whatever we want on the top surface.

Ralph Gilles, Chief Design Officer, Stellantis (Stellantis EV Day 2021)

Stellantis has established a tie-up with LG Energy Solution for EV batteries. The companies announced in October 2021 that they would form a joint venture for manufacturing lithium-ion batteries in North America. The yet-to-be-formed JV company will set up a battery manufacturing facility to supply to Stellantis’ factories in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico for its next-gen BEVs and PHEVs.

The new battery plant should start production by Q1 2024 (January-April 2024) and have an annual production capacity of 40-gigawatt hours. Stellantis and LG Energy Solution haven’t finalized the location yet, but they should complete that task in the coming weeks, as they intend to break ground in Q2 2022 (April-June 2022).

Chrysler Airflow Release Date

Stellantis hopes to make Chrysler desirable and popular once again for a broad range of customers with the launch of the EVs. The company plans to launch the first Chrysler EV in 2025 and fully electrify the brand’s portfolio by 2028. Chrysler CEO Chris Feuell confirmed this development during the concept’s reveal:

This is just the start of our electrification journey, That future includes our commitment to launch the first Chrysler battery electric vehicle in 2025 and fully electrify our portfolio by 2028.

Chris Feuell, CEO, Chrysler (Chrysler Airflow Concept reveal on January 6, 2022)

Further, Feuell revealed that there’s no plan to launch a production version of the Airflow Concept. She said:

While the Airflow is a true concept vehicle, and not destined for production, it showcases our leading-edge electrified drive system technology that delivers up to 400 miles of range and fast-charging functionality. It includes advanced safety technologies that are true to Chrysler’s safety heritage and leadership and also includes intuitive A.I. and connected vehicle technology, because the future isn’t simply about making vehicles move from point A to point B.

Chris Feuell, CEO, Chrysler (Chrysler Airflow Concept reveal on January 6, 2022)
Chrysler Airflow electric SUV rendering
TopElectricSUV has created a rendering of what the Chrysler Airflow could have looked like in showrooms. Note that there is no production plan.

Along with the fully connected user experience, the Chrysler Airflow Concept previews our brand’s commitment to delivering a fully electrified vehicle portfolio by 2028.

Chris Feuell, CEO, Chrysler (Chrysler Airflow Concept reveal on January 6, 2022)

Featured Image Source: Stellantis