By on December 9, 2014

pentastar-v6-628

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ Chrysler Group has big plans for its venerable Pentastar engine family, all in the name of improved fuel efficiency and power.

Automotive News reports the Pentastar Upgrade — or PUG — will include turbocharging of current naturally aspirated mills, direct injection and other technologies, with the first updated 3.6-liter V6 to turn up in 2015 under the bonnet of the Jeep Grand Cherokee.

The next engine under PUG will be a 3.2-liter V6, which will replace the current 3.6-liter unit powering the Chrysler Town & Country when the next-gen model enters showrooms in 2016. The new engine will be paired with the nine-speed automatic found in some trims of the Jeep Cherokee, and is expected to deliver a 25 percent improvement to fuel economy over the current arrangement’s 17 mpg city, 25 mpg highway EPA rating.

Should all go as planned, the aforementioned 3.6-liter could also help the Ram 1500 take the gasoline-efficiency crown back from the Ford F-150 EcoBoost, which it lost to said truck in November.

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103 Comments on “Chrysler Group Introduces PUG Plan For Pentastar V6 Family...”


  • avatar
    VW16v

    Great to see the big 3 battling it out to improve their mpg and engineering while Japanese brands are left in the dust with out dated drivetrains.

    • 0 avatar
      gtemnykh

      Seeing how much trouble the Darts have been having with their 1.4T drivetrains and Mr Kreutzer’s unfortunate transmission failure at 12k miles on his Chrysler van, I’ll stick with my naturally aspirated, port injected, stick shift Civic thank you very much!

      • 0 avatar
        thelaine

        +1

      • 0 avatar
        heavy handle

        I know a magazine had issues with a pre-production Dart years ago, so no need to send the link. Is there any indication that the current cars are the same?

        Reason I’m asking is that a senior Ram/Jeep/Fiat tech told me that the 1.4 is the best engine FCA makes, short of the Cummins. He was off-duty at the time, so no reason to believe he was just toeing the company line.

        • 0 avatar
          danio3834

          “The best” In terms of what exactly? I’m not being obtuse, I’m just trying to understand what he was objectively getting at.

          • 0 avatar
            heavy handle

            Best components, best reliability, best build quality. He said the only time he’s had one apart was during training.
            Three years later and thousands of units sold in our local market, and there hasn’t been a single fundamental engine problem (as opposed to a failing injector or something easy like that). Same goes for the transmissions that he claims are sized for a car twice as big.

        • 0 avatar
          nickoo

          I think it would be liked more if they had tuned it for performance rather than economy in the dart. It seems to be loved in the abarth 500. By best he probably means most advanced tech.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          @Heavy Handle – FCA doesn’t make the Cummins engine. Cummins sells it to them.

          That would explain why Cummins is probably the best engine in a FCA product.

      • 0 avatar
        maxxcool7421

        Add to that complaints about incredibly harsh shifting, coarse unrefined redline where the block is strained beyond efficiency, poor gas mileage when you drive it like a turbo … no thanks.

      • 0 avatar
        VW16v

        Civic ? Watch out for flying metal shards.

        • 0 avatar
          gtemnykh

          No worries mine’s a 2012.

          Edmunds had some serious driveability issues with their long term 1.4T dart, in their case it was merely a faulty sparkplug. Nonetheless it caused the car to go into limp home mode and them continuing to drive the car in that state until they made it to a shop could very well have had lasting effects on the catalytic converter. They also had a non-responsive electronic throttle issue earlier on. Add that to many other build quality issues including sharp exposed fastener ends, a door handle and interior bin lid breaking off.

          You can’t make this stuff up!

          • 0 avatar
            SCE to AUX

            Edmunds never answered readers’ demands to know precisely what the fix was for that Dart.

            A bad spark plug could be a simple fix (replacement), or it could have meant engine replacement (see Ford Triton 5.4) if the engine ingested a broken plug core. Since they were so cagey about it, I think the worst.

            Then – as you know – they returned the Dart to Dodge with no post whatsoever about its actual disposition.

            Frankly, since it was Dodge’s car all along, I think Edmunds was bought (or felt that way), and simply refused to give anything more than passing criticism.

            It was the lamest story ever at Edmunds, and it really made me doubt their credibility.

  • avatar
    thelaine

    More crappy little turbos. Thanks, CAFE.

  • avatar
    Vulpine

    I see a lot of hate for turbos from people who won’t realize that today’s turbos are somewhat different from decades-old versions.

    By reducing the turbo boost roughly in half, you still get the benefit of more air into the engine without stressing the turbo or the cylinders nearly as much. Sure, you also get less horsepower gain, but the idea is to find the balance between performance and reliability–the old turbo’s worst problem. I knew a long time ago that if you just cut the amount of boost the overheating and other issues wouldn’t be nearly as critical. But since I couldn’t afford a turbo-boosted car back then I didn’t bother trying to learn how to control it. Now Ford and nearly every other brand is using a reduced-boost turbo to regain lost power with smaller engines.

    Yes, I do agree that CAFE is the trigger here, but it’s not necessarily the cause of the problem. That comes from all the automakers trying to dodge the intent of the law while staying within the letter of the law.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      @Vulpine – You confuse “hate” for puzzlement, or confusion. Or just not seeing the point.

      No I love turbos, in the ‘traditional’ sense. High drama. Very loud compressors with tons lag. Generous amounts of boost too. Hits, no SLAMS you all at once, so you plan ahead for it. Or build it, and s!destep the clutch! And flat/power shifting???

      But you still had the option of high FE if you could stay off boost. But it’s like crack.

      So the confusion comes from the reason for turbos today, in their applications.

      Turbo engines are just as heavy, just as thirsty, and more expensive (???) than the simple V8 or V6 they replace.

      It’s a just means of chasing one’s own tail.

      • 0 avatar
        Vulpine

        Ah, DM. How did I know you would try to refute me? Let’s take a look at your argument.

        “You confuse “hate” for puzzlement, or confusion.” — No, I see hate for what it is. Turbocharged engines of the ’70s and ’80s were notorious for poor reliability–mostly because the generic driver who owned one forgot that they needed to let the turbo cool down after a drive, requiring at least a minute of letting the engine run at idle before shutting it off. These drivers were all in the habit of ‘kill the engine and run’ as soon as they reached their destination and tended to do the same with a turbocharged engine UNLESS they were gearheads who fully understood WHY they needed to let it cool. That poor reputation still haunts them today, as exemplified by comments like, “More crappy little turbos. Thanks, CAFE.”

        “But you still had the option of high FE if you could stay off boost. But it’s like crack.” — You had that option 30 years ago too, but back then having a turbo meant you wanted to sport it, not use it to improve fuel economy. A room-mate of mine when I lived in Denver bought a turbo-4 Mustang and almost wrecked it the day he bought it because he forgot about the turbo lag. When that turbo, as you say, “… SLAMS you all at once,” you have to be ready for it or expect to lose control. Today’s turbos simply don’t come on as strongly unless you buy it or tune it specifically for that purpose.

        “Turbo engines are just as heavy, just as thirsty, and more expensive (???) than the simple V8 or V6 they replace.” — I would like to see proof of this. Yes, I might agree that they’re more expensive and as thirsty–if driven hard, but show me where a turbo 4 is as heavy as a normally-aspirated V6 producing the same horsepower and torque. Show me where a turbo 6 is as heavy as a normally-aspirated V8 producing the same horsepower and torque. Show me where those normally-aspirated 6s and 8s get the same fuel economy as the turbo 4/6 when you drive it economically. You’re saying it, but can you prove it?

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          @Vulpine – .
          “Prove it…” Dude bro. You’re starting to sound like a certain BAFO that shall remain nameless.

          The Coyote V8 is porky by V8 standards, but is still 29 lbs lighter than the Eco Boost. Yes LIGHTER!!!!

          If you’re gonna p•ssyfoot the Eco Boost, FE savings are marginal. That’s if you can run reg unleaded in both. But give them both a heavy foot and the EB sees much worse FE. Why do you think that is? Bes!des common frackin’d sense.

          And the Eco Boost has had a few issues that are about to be sorted out. The Coyote has had zero apparent issues since new.

          Generally this comparo holds true, cubes vs boost.

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          Mike is correct, the 3.5EB is heavier than the Coyote V8. In similar configurations, the 3.5EB adds about 50 lbs.

          http://www.ford.com/trucks/f150/specifications/capacities/

      • 0 avatar
        jrmason

        I don’t think you’ve driven any turbocharged engine manufactured in the last 12 years or so…in the world of variable geometry turbos the power is much more linear.

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          @jrmason – I drive a turbo diesel every day. It’s more old skool in that it’s a complete dog off the line.

          And I know turbo setups today have worked through the turbo lag, but now boost is forced, right off the line whether you want it or need it, or not. It was nice to have the choice, old skool.

          So current turbos are always spoolin’ and always $uckin’ fuel. Too many complaints about the lag.

          • 0 avatar
            jrmason

            I also drive a 98 Ram CTD most every day. As small as the turbine housing is it is still laggy off the line and will blow a pretty good puff if you stand on it from a stop. This with only a mild injector upgrade. I’ve got an HE351vgt and a manifold off of a 6.7 Cummins that I need to find time to retrofit onto my truck. Can’t wait to make the swap.
            I disagree about the new turbos always sucking fuel, they’re simply keeping the engine in a better map than a fixed turbo. Look at the new Rams for example. Double the torque output of my factory ratings and yet they are still getting the same mileage. Not too shabby.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            That’s the diesel to keep. The pre emissions. But the fuel economy of new diesels is marginally better. But you can hot rod an old diesel to crazy power levels and still have decent FE.

            But old turbo engines, gas or diesel, would run just fine, completely off boost. Have a loss of boost now, in today’s turbos and you’re not going anywhere. The turbo is like a smog pump, but you can’t disconnect it.

            When I had a complete loss of boost in the SVO, I was getting FE in the 40 mpg range. It ran perfect on Pinto power. But that’s obviously not what I’m in it for. V8 mpg, or worse, is alright with me. In that car anyways!

      • 0 avatar
        Monty

        Hmmmm…you’ll have to pry my E92 turbo out of my cold dead hands. Driving a naturally aspirated V8 compared to the turbo? No way I’d go back to the V8. Way better fuel economy compared to the V8, and if you don’t get too high in the rev band in the city and keep the turbo from engaging it’s decent city mileage as well. But when you want more instant power, it’s there in a millisecond. As in snap my head back power. As is walk just about any other car on the road power if I need it. Maybe not against a Hellcat or C7, but put me up against a Ford or Chevy powered V8 truck? Not even close.

        Turbos have seen orders of magnitude improvements in the last quarter century.

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          @Monty – Your E92 turbo is faster than a speeding…..truck???

          But I hope you’re not comparing its fuel economy to the E90 4.0 V8. That thing was an absolute pig! It had the fuel economy of a V8 truck. Namely the thirsty 5.4 F-150 crew cab 4X4 King Ranch. That’s the old generation.

          • 0 avatar
            Monty

            Well, yeah, how many cars have V8’s compared to trucks. V8’s seem to be a small percentage of what’s sold in passenger cars, whereas it seems a ubiquitous choice for trucks. And clowns in tricked out trucks seem to be the biggest percentage of the idiots who attempt to “hole-shoot” me at stoplights.

            The M3 had that V8 – that is pin yourself to the back of the seat fast, but yes, a pig on gas. I really didn’t like it after a period of time, though. There’s a lot of compromises made to use it as a daily driver, especially here with our roads being so poorly maintained. It’s been sold, waiting in storage for it’s new owner to take it out in the spring. I have more fun in the 335i, and it’s a lot more suited as a daily driver or Interstate cruiser.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            Monty, it was a sad day the OEMs decided to drop V8s from most cars.

            Fortunately, there are still a few available for the true aficionados.

            Better get them while they’re hot.

    • 0 avatar
      redav

      I wouldn’t say I hate turbos. Do I prefer NA over turbo? Sure, because I like the idea of simplicity and consistency.

      As best I can tell, companies that have taken the larger, NA approach are getting very similar mpg numbers as those taking the smaller, turbo approach, and if CR & some other sources are to be believed, the NA engines are often more likely to deliver those mpg numbers in the majority of cases.

      I do think there are benefits to turbos, but I get the feeling that most of the trend in industry is driven by regulation/taxation, not actual performance improvement.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        It’s absolutely because of regulation. They’d be using NA 4’s and 6’s forever if they could. No reason to move on from them – they provide plenty of power, are relatively simple, the consumer understands them, and (most importantly) they’re reliable.

        • 0 avatar
          thelaine

          Absolutely CoreyDL. Why consumer choice cannot be permitted, I don’t understand. Some people just feel that they are “experts” and should be able to force the less enlightened into things like crappy turbos that they do not want or need. It is just one example on an endless list.

          “Hate” has nothing to do with it. The word has been stripped of all meaning and is now just a rhetorical weapon used to attack people with whom you disagree.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            Then let’s just call it “strong dislike”. Too many of those who have a “strong dislike” of something are relying on grossly obsolete data that is no longer valid. I strongly suggest opening your mind to new things because the world–and technology–isn’t going to stand still to wait for you.

          • 0 avatar
            thelaine

            Choice vs government mandates. Then, let people decide for themselves what they want. Opinions are better expressed in the marketplace. To each his own.

            There is plenty of competition in the auto market and there could be a lot more if safety regulations were harmonized, among other things.

            There is no reason to force CAFE on manufactures. Many people want gas mileage and will buy efficient cars. Many companies offer them. Other people prioritize differently. Let the companies compete. CAFE is a curse.

      • 0 avatar
        George B

        Owners of both the 2014 1.5L turbo Ford Fusion and the 2014 2.4L NA Honda Accord average about 29 mpg on Fuelly. http://www.fuelly.com/ Not surprising since they are very close in weight and the amount of air that has to be pushed out of the way on the highway. However, fuel economy ratings and engine displacement taxes favor the small turbocharged motor while high ambient temperatures and indifferent maintenance favor naturally aspirated. Just shows that preferences of US consumers are less important relative to government demands and the China market.

    • 0 avatar
      MBella

      It’s not hate, but understanding that these new engines are not as reliable as the naturally aspirated versions they are replacing. They don’t run the same boost, but the compression is almost as high as naturally aspirated equivalents. I love a turbo in a performance car, but when it comes time for my parents to replace their Accord, do I want them with the added complexity of a turbo, No. We’re already seeing issues pop up on the new Mercedes turbos, and they haven’t been out for very long. Leeks are cropping up everywhere. The last two V8s Mercedes had was the M113 and the M273, both pretty much bulletproof excluding the idler gear issue on the 273. Once fixed the engine was good. The new turbo M278 has all sorts of problems, and will just get worse as miles start racking up on them.

      • 0 avatar
        Vulpine

        Any new engine design is going to start out with problems; even the “venerable Pentastar” had serious issues its first year on the road. But when it offered 50% more horsepower and roughly 20% better fuel mileage than the engine it replaced AND they fixed the warped head problem, the Pentastar has proven to be a good engine. The issues you mention about the Mercedes turbo engines carry the same qualifier when you say, “… and they haven’t been out for very long.” In another year or two that may be one of their strongest engine families.

        And that’s the point. We’re working with all-new engine designs by many of these companies and to be quite blunt anybody would be a fool to buy a first-year engine because of it. Even though I bought a first-year Saturn Vue back in ’02, the engine itself was already a few years old (the I-4 Opel, not the V6 Honda) and has proven extremely reliable for now over 12 years while that Honda drivetrain was a maintenance pig according to many. The little 1.6L four under the hood of my Fiat 500 is years old and proven tough. And yes, the 1.4T under the hood of the Dart and the 500 Abarth is also a proven engine; the only mistake FCA made there is that they tuned it for economy BECAUSE they needed to build a 40mpg car quickly in order to qualify to buy out the rest of the government loan. From what I’ve read, the Chrysler 200 using that same engine does significantly better on the performance side, though it lost a bit of economy.

        So you can’t really say today’s turbo engines aren’t reliable in general. Yes, they do take slightly different care and handling, but for some brands that’s now programmed into the ECM. Ford has effectively proven that the turbo can work well at lower boost rates and can be reliable once the causes for most of their issues are discovered and corrected.

  • avatar
    Morea

    As long as they don’t try to put them into Alfa Romeos I am fine with it.

  • avatar
    raresleeper

    Yeah.

    Cause nothing says “long term reliability” like a turbocharged Pentastar.

    • 0 avatar
      SayMyName

      Anyone shopping at a Fiatsler store isn’t thinking about the long term. They only care about getting a shiny new car with a 540 beacon score and just $1500 down.

      Such an inborn lack of consideration about the future, of course, is likely why they’re relegated to looking at Darts and 200s in the first place.

      Fiatsler: sh!t cars, from a sh!t company, for sh!t people.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    Dear Manufacturers,

    If you are going to bother to put displacement markings on the giant plastic engine covers that you are affixing to everything, at least give the numbers/letters some color so they stand out. It would be a nice bone to throw to us gearheads.

    Sincerely,

    Enthusiasts

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      I scrolled down, ready to comment that the photo shows one of the most boring and nonsense engine bays I’ve ever seen. The plastic shields are clearly oversized for effect, and everything looks extremely cheap.

      Chrysler needs to try a little harder.

  • avatar
    YellowDuck

    Strange. I feel like the Pentastars were introduced, like, yesterday. And now they are referred to as “venerable”. But I guess it has been seven years or so?

    • 0 avatar
      George B

      I had the same thought. If the Pentastar is “venerable”, then I must be ancient. I would call the Pentastar “mature” or “a proven design”. Compliments for an engine from a car company that I didn’t expect to survive. Who would have expected good product from a bankrupt manufacturer acquired by Fiat?

    • 0 avatar
      Brian P

      Not even close. Production start was 2011.

      Early models had some cylinder-head issues, but my understanding is that those were fixed sometime in 2012.

  • avatar
    suspekt

    Seriously folks,
    A 3.5 litre Earth Dreams Honda V6 with VCM is all the proof you need that naturally aspirated is the way to go in most medium duty mainstream applications. Further, the Honda Motor doesn’t have DI (the Acura variants do) and makes do with a 6 speed…. Hmmm…. Owners easily see 35mpg highway and can trap at 98mph-101mph in the 1/4…. Oh, and it’s a SOHC design. The brilliance of simplicity.

    • 0 avatar
      suspekt

      It’s almost a guarantee that Honda can up the Accord game by:
      1. Add DI
      2. Drop displacement to 3.2 or less
      3. Add a 9 speed transmission

      • 0 avatar
        redav

        I thought the Accord had a CVT.

        • 0 avatar
          gtemnykh

          v6 accords have 6spd automatics (6spd manual available on coupes)

          • 0 avatar
            raresleeper

            That always “erked” (“irked” ??) me.

            Let’s put the V6/6MT combo back in the sedans please.

            Sigh.

            Come to think of it, let’s put it in the Camry, too. Who cares if there’s no coupe option. V6/6MT Sedan. They say they “ain’t got no room for boring”.

        • 0 avatar

          Nope. They do have something called “eCVT”, which is actually a through-electric hybrid with mechanical clutch. Just misleading all around. BTW, the fuel economy of that pseudo-CVT is absolutely astonishing. It matches Prius in a car that’s, well, Accord sized. I cannot fathom just why Honda would call it “CVT”, it only confuses and spooks buyers.

    • 0 avatar
      raresleeper

      The 3.5L Earth Dreams engine is bliss.

      I drove around a Pilot with that same engine and even with cylinder deactivation it was quiet, refined, and responsive. It was leaps and bounds ahead of the Town and Country I drove with its Pentastar the day before, which felt rather coarse, IMHO.

      Can’t comment on a 9-speed tranny, though, I’m not a fan of more gears than you can imagine on a slush box. But hold your breath long enough, and ‘m sure you’ll see one implemented, unfortunately.

      • 0 avatar
        SC5door

        You mean the cylinder deactivation engines that have little puffs of blue and black smoke when they go down the highway? Easiest way to tell if an Odyssey has it.

        • 0 avatar
          raresleeper

          Hmm.

          I’ve never seen an Odyssey with “puffs of blue and black smoke”. ?

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            Maybe not an Odyssey, but my #2 son’s Chrysler 300 V8 had that problem, AND the driveline shudder when the cylinder activation/deactivation engaged/disengaged.

            I found it distracting, especially when descending down a winding hilly road and then touching the gas pedal on a flat stretch between descends. (a “WTF was that!?” moment)

            My daughter had another Odyssey before the 2013 Odyssey she bought, and I never saw puffs of blue or black smoke either. And there were times I followed behind her in my truck.

          • 0 avatar
            VW16v

            Every owner of an Odyssey over the past 12 years that ive known has had issues with their transmissions. Some small issues and some major. But not one was ever recalled by Honda. Sad stuff.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            VW16v, yeah, that was my fear for her first Odyssey as well. But she never had any issues with the transmission, or anything else.

            And she never took care of it, just drove the daylights out of it in the Los Angeles, CA, area.

            It had well over 150K on the odo when she traded it for her 2013 Odyssey, and it still had the original timing belt. Women don’t worry about such things.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    I think what they should do is put the same engine in all of their passenger cars. And I am certain that 2.7L is the correct displacement for such an engine. This is a winning formula.

    • 0 avatar
      gtemnykh

      Oh yes. I can hear the timing chain slack and piston slap now :)

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      No. Corey, you have brought up unspeakable things.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        It was just a Concorde moment! Sorry.

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          I had a Concorde. What a comfortable car. Good thing it had the SOHC 3.2L V6.

          • 0 avatar
            NoGoYo

            Did all 2nd gen “cloud cars” have the 2.7?

            I certainly don’t see very many of the 01-06 models any more…

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Yes, it was the V6 option on the second gen cloud cars. It was also in the LX cars and Sebring/Avenger until 2010.

          • 0 avatar
            gtemnykh

            GF’s grandpa had a 2.7 Concorde. Extremely comfy cruiser, especially in the back seat. The car only had 52k miles on it in 2013, but was making ‘funny noises’ on startup. I recommended immediately switching to a high quality synthetic, I suspect it was the timing chain tensioner making noise. His good ol’ boy mechanic suggested some snake oil additive that seemed to quiet things down, he thankfully sold it soon afterwards.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            My Concorde made it to 156K miles before my parents sold it while I was deployed. Per most Chrysler cars of that era, you could turn the ignition without the key (same with our Dakota and Ram). I think the only issue my family or I had was the heater core took a dump and an EGR valve had to be replaced.

  • avatar
    NoGoYo

    It’s about time the 3.6 Pentastar breaks 300hp, but it shouldn’t need a turbo to do it.

    GM has been making a 300+ hp 3.6 V6 for…how long? Five years?

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      I criticized the Toyota 3.5 for only making ~256 HP the other day, and I was promptly yelled at. The general consensus was that it was not reasonable to ask for over 300 in an NA V6. That was only for performance applications.

      Nissan has been making a +300 3.5 for a lot longer than GM!

      • 0 avatar
        gtemnykh

        Where is this 256 coming from? Last I checked it’s been 268 since about 2007, bumped up to 275 for Lexuses running premium in some instances. With direct injection in the likes of the GS350, it crests the 300 mark.

        NoGoYo, I think that is the key for an NA ~3.5-3.6L V6 breaking the 300hp mark in mainstream sedans: direct injection.

        At the end of the day, numbers are only part of the story. How can a 278hp Accord V6 or 268hp Camry V6 walk all over the vaunted 274hp 2.0Ts in the Korean twins?

    • 0 avatar
      Speedygreg7

      The Pentastar does make 300hp today. As installed in the RAM 1500, it is tuned to 305hp.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      The Pentastar broke 300 HP in 2011. The most common versions are in the 280-290 HP range.

      All of the 3.5L-3.7L NA V6 engines have about the same HP. The Toyota V6 is on the lower end, but it’s not that significant.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      NoGoYo, our 2012 Grand Cherokee is advertised at 295hp (when it was new) with a single exhaust.

      It now has over 60K on the clock but still feels sprightly for a CUV of this weight, with only a 5-speed automatic to put the power to the ground.

      I would like to see Fiatsler put dual exhausts with a cross-over tube and dual catalytic converters on this puppy and a less-restrictive air filter, like a K&N. I believe that would add some useful rpm and hp.

      The 8-speed in the 2014 GC is nice but it makes the Pentastar drive train seem like a hyper, nervous Chihuahua, always darting around the gears.

    • 0 avatar
      SC5door

      It does certainly break 300 hp.

      Ram 1500: 305
      Challenger: 305
      Charger: 300
      300S V-6: 300

      Also GM’s 3.6L is direct injected, the Chrysler is not.

      • 0 avatar
        NoGoYo

        It used to stop at 290, guess it got upped a bit.

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          NoGoYo, we actually really don’t know unless we put it on a Dyno.

          I’ll say my Tundra 5.7 is a lot more sprightly than the Pentastar in the GC over similar terrain. That’s where I feel the difference, like going up US82 into the mountains.

          I remember when the Big Block V8’s were popular back in the fifties, sixties and very early seventies, and they cranked out way more horsepower and torque than advertised in the brochures.

          The DOT would not let them publish the actual numbers which were much higher. This according to my uncle who sold and serviced new cars, like Olds.

          I had a 455 in my Custom Cruiser and in my Toronado, and it took a lot of horses to get those behemoths moving from a dead stop.

          Both of those cars hauled ass down the autobahns, just not for very long, lest I would overheat them or get vibrated to death. At 120mph things got blurry. At 125mph things fuzzed out.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            I would hope your 5.7L V8 feels stronger than a 3.6L NA V6.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            bball, I was hoping to illustrate that the Pentastar’s final gearing made a V6 feel sprightly in a very heavy CUV.

            My son’s SRT8 is downright giddy with power, easily doing a four-wheel-spinning drift when goosed in a curve, even though the gearing is taller.

            But as sprightly as the Pentastar feels because of the gearing, I don’t believe I can duplicate that.

        • 0 avatar
          Brian P

          The 5.7 Tundra engine would certainly be thirstier, too.

          The Pentastar has been 305 hp in the Challenger since launch. My understanding is that all of the Pentastars are internally the same, and the power differences between models are due to differing intake and exhaust systems.

          I have a Pentastar in a ProMaster van, and I’m quite happy with it.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            Brian P, the 5.7 is quite a bit thirstier but the Pentastar, advertised at 16mpg highway, hasn’t come near that for us.

            I don’t keep track of it because vehicles are the only way we can get around in our part of the country and we’ll buy gasoline no matter what the cost.

            But just driving normally in combined driving, I would guess that my 5.7L gives me between 12-14 mpg and the Pentastar 16-20mpg.

            The constraints to getting high mpgs are the distances we travel at our altitude and the speeds we travel at, normally cruising at 85mph on the four-lane highways. Plus we buck heavy winds much of the time.

            That’s not conducive to getting high mpgs in any vehicle.

          • 0 avatar
            Brian P

            ProMaster (low roof) with the Pentastar tied to the olde 62TE 6-speed automatic. Mine uses a little over 11 L/100 km (about 20 mpg US) in mostly highway, between 100 and 110 km/h depending on whether it’s two-lane or four-lane roads. I really can’t complain about that, given the size of the vehicle.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            Brian P, that’s darn good fuel economy. In my part of the US, the speed limit on the four-lane highways is 75mph, but most everybody goes at least 85mph (on cruise control).

            If anyone were to risk going 100km (60mph) they’d better have their blinkers on, or risk getting rammed by someone closing too fast.

            That actually happened a couple of years back, and the military police closed all four lanes of Hwy US70 so MedEvac helicopters could land on the opposite s!de of the Hwy where the accident occurred.

    • 0 avatar
      LeadHead

      The Pentastar has been available in 300HP+ versions for quite some time. The 2011 Challenger had a 305 HP version, and the Ram 1500 has the 305HP version as well.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        I was impressed with ours in the Grand Cherokee. Power to weight ratio is very favorable, Lightweight aluminum engine. 24-valves.

        I believe it to be every bit as good as the 3.5 in our 2008 Highlander. The Toyota 3.5 has been bullet-proof, for decades.

        But I must admit that I would like to see a return to the 2.5L 24-valve V6 in lieu of the 2.5L 4-banger in the Toyota products.

        At least Jeep downsized the 3.6 Pentastar to 3.2 to be offered in some smaller models.

  • avatar
    Russycle

    “….for its venerable Pentastar engine family”

    Venerable? The Pentastar debuted 4 years ago. If you call that venerable, I’d hate to know what you’d use to describe me, ya whippersnapper!

    • 0 avatar

      If we apply Occam’s razor, the simplest explanation is that Cameron was confused about the relatively recent genesis of Pentastar and laboured under the supposition that it continued one of the preceding families, of which Chrysler had at least half a dozen.

  • avatar

    I thought Pentastar was intended to support a water-cooled turbocharger from the get-go, they just didn’t have the money to productize it from the outset. I may be mistaken about it, howeveer. Good info is difficult to find even on Allpar.

    • 0 avatar
      gtemnykh

      Looking at the exhaust manifold integrated into the head, I’d say yes it’s practically begging for a turbo bolted up to the flange. At the same time I’d stay far-far away from an engine like this until they proved that the head can withstand all of that immense heat that it’d be subjected to. I bet the turbo would be offset from the head with some sort of intermediate pipe, at least I’d hope so.

  • avatar
    DC Bruce

    Interesting data point on turbo charged engines vs. variable displacement. Pickup trucks.com tested a bunch of 1/2 ton pickups, including a Ford F-150 with the 3.5 liter ecoboost engine and a Silverado with the 5.3 liter variable displacement, DI V-8. One of the tests was a loop of mixed driving, pulling, IIRC an 8,000 lb. trailer. They swapped drivers at predetermined locations to eliminate the effect of different driving styles, and all of the truck is the test drove together, so they were all subject to the same traffic conditions.

    The Chevy V-8 achieved about 12 mpg in that circuit; the Ford ecoboost about 10 mpg. That’s significant. Unloaded, in EPA’s test, the Ford wins by about 1 mpg.

    So, I think people are deservedly skeptical about the fuel economy benefits of turbocharging small displacement engines.

  • avatar
    PentastarPride

    Every time I hear about the Pentastar, I get into a “what-if” scenario. What if Chrysler retained/refined the LH platform and equipped it with the Pentastar and a six-speed RWD transmission?

    My day would be made if I could obtain a brand-new Intrepid or Concorde with this combo, running it alongside the LX 300/Charger/Challenger. The MPG would be very impressive with its aerodynamics, even though the platform is relatively large. I’m willing to bet a +5 MPG gain over the LX counterparts with a little tweaking. We’d have a Camry/Accord killer overnight, no hybrid needed.

    Alas, it is only a dream.

  • avatar
    chicagoland

    Can’t just “blame CAFE” in US. Europe has strict “green laws” and expensive, highly taxed, fuel

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