There have been no straight six-cylinder engines at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles since 2007, when Jeep launched the Wrangler JK generation. While Chrysler had been using straight six-cylinder engines since 1964, it eventually decided that it was already enough for this mill.
Just recently, rumors have been sprouting about the possibility of the rebirth of straight inline six-cylinder engines at Fiat Chrysler. These rumors also came up in 2017, but so far, no inline six-cylinder engines have been confirmed or even spied. The latest speculation was a result of a published report from Allpar, the same Web site that reported a similar rumor last year. Of course, these are just speculations, and we don’t vouch for their authenticity.
According to Allpar, Fiat Chrysler is reportedly developing a new straight-six engine as a complement to the new GME four-cylinder mills. These smooth yet compact new straight-six engines are to be derived from the new GME four-cylinder units.
Citing a source privy to the carmaker, Allpar said Fiat Chrysler originally intended to boosted versions of the Pentastar V6 engine. However, its engineers faced a number of challenges and restrictions. It was noted that the size and power constraints of the Pentastar V6 units rendered then less practical than a straight-six engine derived from the GME four-cylinder units. Since these new straight-six engines are based from the new GME four-cylinder powerplants, Fiat Chrysler may not have to modify some of the production equipment for the engine.
Allpar cited two sources saying that Fiat Chrysler could be planning to build the new six-cylinder engines at one of its factories in Dundee, Michigan or at its facilities in Trenton, Michigan, adding that one of these will be a fast line while the other would be a slow line. Its Trenton site is likely to be chosen as it has been considered as Fiat Chrysler’s primary source for engine, thanks to its high production and quality. On the other hand, the Dundee facility has been the source for four-cylinder WGE and FIRE mills. It is also proximate to Fiat Chrysler’s Wrangler facilities in Toledo, Ohio.
There has also be a speculation that Fiat Chrysler would eventually idle its Mack I plant, which has been employed for producing Pentastar V6 engines and parts. This is because that as soon as production of the straight six-cylinder engine ramps up, less production space would be needed for the Pentastar V6 mill. Sales of vehicles with the Pentastar V6 engines are expected to slow down when Fiat Chrysler starts selling those with the straight six-cylinder units.