Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has announced it will start building small Alfa Romeo, Fiat and Jeep SUVs during 2022.
The company announced three new models will start rolling off the Tychy, Poland, production line in the second half of 2022, with the plant to be expanded and modernised.
FCA – soon to be part of a merged company called Stellantis – also confirmed the new cars will feature the option of hybrid and all-electric propulsion, but didn’t outline what the new products will be.
Dr. Janusz Michalek, president of the Katowice Special Economic Zone SA, confirmed these will be new products and not models already produced in other FCA factories.
That indicates the Alfa Romeo product will be the new, unnamed B-SUV to slot in underneath the Tonale.
In FCA’s last five-year plan, it confirmed the Tonale would have a plug-in hybrid variant but its smaller sibling would go one further and feature a pure-electric version.
Automotive News Europe reports supplier sources have confirmed the Alfa will be the sub-Tonale model, while the Jeep will be a new model to slot in below the Renegade and the Fiat will be an indirect replacement for the defunct Punto hatchback.
FCA had reportedly been wanting to re-enter the light car segment which it withdrew from in 2018, though it’s unclear whether it’ll still develop a conventional hatchback model.
The three new models will use the PSA Group’s Common Modular Platform, which FCA will have access to as part of the merged Stellantis corporation.
CMP currently underpins the Peugeot 208 and 2008, Opel Corsa and Mokka, Citroen C4 and DS 3 Crossback.
All of these models have a pure-electric variant that uses a 50kWh lithium-ion battery and a front-mounted 100kW electric motor and offer approximately 321km of electric range.
The Peugeot e-2008, for example, has 331km of electric range under the stricter WLTP measures.
The Tychy plant currently produces the Fiat 500, Abarth 595 and Lancia Ypsilon, with a total of 263,176 cars leaving the factory last year.
The company is investing over 755 million Polish Zloty (A$262.9 million) in refurbishing the factory and plans to increase production volume to 400,000 annual units.
The new SUVs will be the first post-merger models from FCA to share PSA platforms.
Just days ago, the European Union approved FCA and PSA’s plans to merge to become Stellantis, the world’s fourth-largest automaker. Shareholders will vote today on whether to approve the merger.
The new Alfa Romeo SUV will be only the third SUV from the brand following the already introduced Stelvio and the upcoming Tonale, which is expected to debut this year.
Both the B-SUV and Tonale will serve as indirect replacements for the defunct MiTo and the Giulietta, which was axed last year.
An A/B-segment SUV was confirmed in FCA’s five-year plan for the off-road brand back in 2018, slotting in beneath the Renegade that’s set to be redesigned in 2022.
FCA has yet to comment on whether it’ll feature a Trail-Rated variant like every other member of the Jeep range.
The upcoming small Fiat SUV gives the mainstream Italian brand a crossover to slot in beneath the 500X.
It’s not the first time Fiat has offered a high-riding tyke. It introduced a 4×4 version of its Panda city car back in 1983, with a selectable four-wheel drive system produced by Steyr-Puch.
The return of the Panda nameplate in the 21st century also saw the return of a Panda 4×4, with an all-wheel drive model also offered in the current generation and sporting more rugged SUV styling elements.