Fiat Chrysler to Stomp Out Diesel Across Its Lineup, Report Claims

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems

The popular thing among automakers last year, besides the incessant preaching of “mobility,” was the pledging of allegiance to an electrified future. This year, it seems diesel fuel is the bogeyman all automakers must reject. We’ve already told you about Porsche’s abandonment of the blacklisted power source. Now, it’s Fiat Chrysler’s turn.

Though unconfirmed at this time, the Financial Times (subscription required) reports that FCA’s mid-term plan, due out this June, will announce the dropping of diesel across its lineup by 2022. If you’re currently wondering how you’ll tow a horse trailer using a battery, don’t get too upset just yet.

The report specifies FCA’s passenger car lineup, which — in Europe, at least — is a heavy user of compression ignition engines. Europeans, of course, are increasingly looking elsewhere for propulsion sources. Diesel registrations fell 8 percent last year, and governments across the land now spend their free time thinking of ways to rid the world of the fuel they once promoted and incentivized.

Keeping up with the latest European emissions standard isn’t cheap, and it seems FCA would rather not bother. Some 40.6 percent of FCA vehicles sold in that market last year contained a diesel engine. The phase-out reportedly covers the Fiat, Maserati, Jeep, and Alfa Romeo brands, sources claim, but fear not, American consumer.

FT claims commercial vehicles are expected to be exempt from the plan, along with U.S. products like Ram trucks, where the legendary Cummins turbodiesel inline-six is needed to do battle with General Motors and Ford. America’s emissions standards aren’t as volatile as Europe’s, and FCA isn’t about to kiss off a huge market in the interest of environmental stewardship.

As well, the light-duty 3.0-liter diesel V6, which briefly disappeared from the market after last year’s emissions brouhaha, is scheduled to appear in the Jeep Wrangler in 2019. That engine — now compliant with EPA regulations once again — also resides in the Ram 1500 and Jeep Grand Cherokee.

A free fix for older Ram and Jeep EcoDiesel models should arrive this year.

[Image: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles]

Steph Willems
Steph Willems

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  • Darex Darex on Feb 26, 2018

    Doesn't it sound as though the biggest cheats in all this are protesting the loudest, even while they deny, deny, deny?

    • Danio3834 Danio3834 on Feb 26, 2018

      The only company to be confirmed as a cheat is VW. The rest of the allegations against other companies are nothing more than bluster. Basically: Your vehicles emit more emissions than the test standard, while operating outside the test parameters. Well, duh.

  • Sigivald Sigivald on Feb 26, 2018

    "If you’re currently wondering how you’ll tow a horse trailer using a battery, don’t get too upset just yet." Well, there are these "gas engine" things, that actually have rather a lot of power, it turns out, even if FCA *had been* referring to killing diesel truck engines.

  • Probert A few mega packs would probably have served as decent backup.
  • Lou_BC Lead sleds. Now-a-days GM would just use Bondo.
  • Jrhurren This is a great series. Thanks Corey
  • Tane94 Not as stylish as the Soul which it is replacing but a practical shape and bonus points for EV only.
  • Ronin What is the magical white swan event in the foreseeable future that will suddenly reverse the trend?Success tends to follow success, and likewise failure. The perception, other than among true believers, is that e-cars are a lost cause. Neither government fiat, nor government bribery, nor even the promise of superior virtue among one's peers have been enough to push past the early adapter curve. Either the bust-out is right now for e-cars, or it doesn't happen. Marketing 101.Even subtle language-manipulation, such as deeming those possessing common sense as suffering from some sort of vague anxiety (eg, "range anxiety") has not been enough to induce people to care.Twenty years from now funny AI-generated comedians will make fun of the '20s, and their obsession with theose silly half-forgotten EVs. They will point out that, yes, EVs actually ran on electricity generated by such organic fuels as coal and natural gas after all, and then they will perform synthesized laughter at us.