Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has just surpassed making its five millionth Pentastar V-6 engine. That’s easy to believe considering its wide spread use and availability in nearly every FCA product. In fact, 47 percent of all FCA’s U.S.-spec vehicles have come equipped with the V-6 since the start of 2015.
Introduced in 2010 with the then-new Jeep Grand Cherokee, the Pentastar V-6 began life displacing 3.6 liters. Now the engine design has grown to include a 3.2-liter version for the Jeep Cherokee and a 3.0-liter version for the Chinese-spec Wrangler, Grand Cherokee, and Chrysler 300.
It’s thanks to the engine’s compact design that allows so many vehicles to utilize it. A 60-degree V keeps its width to a minimum while its exhaust manifolds are integrated into the cylinder heads, eliminating the jumble of individual exhaust tubing. This allows the Pentastar to be easily fitted into either a transverse or longitudinal powertrain orientation with almost no modifications between applications. What’s more, its A/C compressor and alternator are mounted directly to the block, eliminating the need for numerous accessory drive variations.
In the truck world, the Pentastar makes headlines in both the Ram and Jeep brand. The 3.6-liter V-6 comes standard in the Ram 1500 and offers 305 horsepower and 269 pound-feet of torque, giving the truck a respectable V-6 max tow rating of 7,600. As for the Jeep brand, the 3.6-liter is still going strong in the Grand Cherokee. The Wrangler also uses the 3.6-liter, except in China, where FCA powers the Jeep with the 230-horse, 210-pound-feet 3.0-liter version.
The Pentastar might not be as iconic as say, the GM small-block V-8, but with FCA’s widespread and continued use of the engine, that could chance over time. Just don’t count on hot-rodders swapping Pentastars in their weekend toys.
Continue reading for more information
The Jeep brand certainly has reason to celebrate as 2014 proved to be its best sales year ever, with a final tally of 1,017,019 vehicles sold globally. It marks the first time Jeep has broken into the million-unit club and the fifth consecutive year of sales increases, both globally and in the U.S.
Much of Jeep’s success can be attributed to the new-for-2014 Cherokee. Global sales topped 236,000 in its first year. The small crossover, though met with some criticism and initial hiccups, has proved very marketable.
“While we are especially pleased with the way the new Jeep Cherokee is resonating in the marketplace,” says Jeep Brand President and CEO Mike Manley in a company statement, “the fact is that every vehicle in the Jeep lineup recorded significant worldwide sales gains.”
Manley isn’t kidding. Every Jeep vehicle posted impressive gains. As a whole, sales in the Asia-Pacific region were major help in Jeep’s overall success. China alone saw a massive 49 percent increase over 2013. Sales were also up 40 percent in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. The Grand Cherokee actually led the entire brand in sales with a 279,567-unit year worldwide, with only 183,786 of those sold in the U.S. It appears Jeep is still in the business of conquering foreign lands.
This year is slated to be even better. 2015 is actually the year Jeep officials predicted the brand would crest the one million mark, so we can suspect the automaker will enjoy even greater success to come.
Click past the jump for more info on the 2014 Jeep Cherokee
The current generation Chrysler Sebring and Dodge Avenger have met with mixed reviews at best. Back in October rumors began to swirl that Chrysler was focusing in on some troublesome models including the Sebring and Avenger. To date Chrysler has publicly announced its intention to kill the Dodge Magnum, Chrysler Pacifica, PT Cruiser Convertible and the Chrysler Crossfire. What fate awaits the Sebring and Avenger?