The mechanics of the pending merger between Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and PSA Group have been disclosed, but the nuts and bolts of its impact on the respective companies product development have not been discussed – until now. Reportedly, FCA is going to lean very heavily on switching its vehicles to PSA architectures.
According to Automotive News the combined automaker plans to quickly move FCA passenger cars to one of two PSA architectures. The move has many motivators; including the added economic scale of bring FCA vehicles under the fold and the fact the PSA architectures are considerably more modern than most of FCA’s.
The combined company says about two-thirds of its annual production will be on two different architectures, both of which are currently PSA architectures. Around 3 million vehicles per year will be built on PSA’s company CMP architecture, while 2.6 million will ride on the larger PSA EMP2 platform.
PSA designed the CMP platform to cover the small car and compact segments with one architecture. PSA just begin production on this platform this year with the new Peugeot 208 and 2008 and the Opel/Vauxhall Corsa.
The EMP2 platform covers the upper end of the compact segment and the midsize segments. This architecture debuted in 2017 with the Peugeot 3008. It is also on the 5008 midsize SUV, the DS 7 Crossback, the Citroen C5 Aircross and the Opel Grandland.
Both the CMP and EMP2 architecture are appealing to the new, combined entity because they offer multi-energy capability. This means any vehicle built on either architecture can be powered by gas, diesel or battery-electric propulsion systems, something FCA platforms currently lack.
Reports suggest the first FCA vehicle to move to one of the PSA platforms could be the upcoming Alfa Romeo Tonale. The compact SUV is slated to hit the market in 2022, meaning it is already well into development, but apparently not far enough along to pivot it to a PSA platform.
FCA has already confirmed plans to rollout a battery-electric version of the Tonale sometime after its initial launch, which could be the inflection point for using a PSA platform versus the planned FCA architecture.
While the two PSA architectures are slated to standup two-thirds of FCA and PSA’s vehicles, there will still be other architectures in the fold. Ram and Jeep will continue to use body-on-frame platforms for some of their vehicles, while commercial vehicles at both automakers will continue to use unique architectures.