It was deemed inevitable but now Fiat and Chrysler have finally started sharing platforms and developing cross-breeds. The first Maserati SUV is the first major transplant of platform from one company to the other. Fiat's CEO, Sergio Marchionne describes this platform, where the Grand Cherokee was built, as a “great architecture.”
He also called it as the best choice to build a Maserati SUV. Earlier this month, Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne said that the Grand Cherokee architecture “has legs.” He talked about the importance of utilizing the work that went on inside Chrysler on the new Grand Cherokee.
He talked about having underestimated its level of solidity and resilience. Notably, this SUV will not be made in Fiat’s production lines in Italy or in other sites but instead, it will be built at Chrysler's Jefferson North assembly plant. The Wall Street Journal reported that the SUV will be launched in 2013.
At this stage, it is still too early to determine what engines will be available with the SUV, and if they originate from the US or Italy.
There are speculations that the inbreeding of Fiat-Chrysler brands will extend some more. It’s believed that the Ferrari-built 4.2l or a 4.7l V8 will be used on the Maserati SUV produced by Chrysler in the US. [via autonews - sub. required]