FCA Australia has confirmed the Chrysler brand will leave the country as a result of the “global push towards electrification and focus on SUVs”, a strategy adopted by parent company Stellantis. Australia was the only right-hand-drive market selling Chrysler vehicles.
Chrysler Australia offered two models – the Chrysler 300 SRT and Chrysler 300C Luxury, with both still available in limited quantities at Chrysler dealerships.
FCA Australia said it remains committed to the supply of parts and authorised servicing of Chrysler vehicles, with all Jeep dealerships continuing to service them.
“We are very excited about this new era of mobility,” said Kevin Flynn, Managing Director of FCA Australia. “Stellantis is dedicated to becoming the market leader in low-emission vehicles and committed to developing the most capable and sustainable high-performing and four-wheel drive vehicles in the world.
“We have a hugely positive year ahead of us, focusing on electrification and moving into a very premium offering with our all-new two- and three-row Jeep Grand Cherokee as well as the PHEV Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe. These models represent real advancements in terms of technology, luxury, efficiency and capability.”
FCA Australia said that in addition to offering the Wrangler, Gladiator, Cherokee and Compass in its line-up, Jeep Australia will introduce two firsts for the brand in 2022 – the all-new three-row Jeep Grand Cherokee L and plug-in hybrid Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe.
Flynn paid tribute to the Chrysler brand, saying it “held a special place in the heart of many Australians and we are proud of its history here”.
The company began operations in Australia in 1964 at the Tonsley Park Assembly Plant in suburban Adelaide, becoming “a celebrated and iconic brand” in Australia.
Chrysler’s local achievements included the development of the HEMI six-cylinder engine, made exclusively for Australia and the most powerful six-cylinder engine produced domestically. Though the engine was based on a US design, it was not produced for North America.
In the 1970s, Chrysler Australia released the Valiant Charger, which became the brand’s muscle car and is still considered one of its most collectable vehicles.
Some 50 years later, the 300 SRT also features a HEMI engine but in a 6.4-litre V8 configuration, delivering 350 kW and 637 Nm of torque.