• Aug 3, 2009
Fiat's advanced Multiair technology could find its way under the hood of future Chryslers as the companies move ahead together. "It is low-invasive hardware" said Lucio Bernard of Fiat Powertrain Technologies, the division of the Italian automotive conglomerate tasked with developing the parts that make the cars go.

The Multiair system, which uses its sophisticated software and fast-acting electrohydraulic actuation to send the throttle plate off to the annals of history, appears deceptively simple. The system slots into the cylinder head kind of like a Lego brick, and is easily adaptable to most engines. This being the case, modifying it to work with Chrysler engines wouldn't be a difficult task.

The software to run it is what Fiat's most proud of; the competition is years behind, it says, and the company has patented its rig. Alfa Romeo already has MultiAir out in the wild with the MiTo, and with the need for fuel efficiency gains in Chrysler's lineup, something that's essentially as easy as snapping pieces together seems very attractive.

[Source: Automotive News - Sub. Req'd]


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  • 19 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      Chrysler has one of the best implementations of Cylinder on Demand... it just works. So this should build off of that and give their engines more longevity in the mileage wars without requiring turbos or DI
        • 5 Years Ago
        Chris 4:33PM (8/03/2009)

        "Chrysler has one of the best implementations of Cylinder on Demand... it just works. So this should build off of that and give their engines more longevity in the mileage wars without requiring turbos or DI"

        While I do not disagree about Chrysler's MDS being the best implementation of that system out there, and believe Multi-Air shows promise, neither of those technologies are a replacement for GDI gasoline direct injection and the use of turbo chargers along with it. To not offer these technologies will deliver Chrysler it's final death blow, and if they are smart they will do their best to combine all of these technologies into several of their pending engine line-ups. The ICE(internal cumbustion engine has a lot of years left in it and GDI combined with turbos is going to have to be part of the formula in order to maximize efficiency, and stay competitive.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I wonder how long it will take Chrysler to combine this with their (well, Mechadyne's) cam-in-cam technology to allow it to have variable timing on the exhaust valves as well? Variable timing, duration and lift on the intake valves and variable timing on the exhaust valves from a single camshaft. That would be quite impressive.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Now if only Fiat could get around to fixing Chrysler's interior material quality issues.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I like the innovation, and it's this sort of cleverness that will keep ICE engines feasible... but I do find it somewhat scary that the Italians are adding more complexity to engines. They're not well known for reliability, and this will add one more thing that can break.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Come on, really? It's 2009... Italian cars in general may still not be as reliable as say a Honda, but the old stereotypes haven't applied for many years. If you look at the customer satisfaction surveys, even though Fiat as a whole is low on the list, the issues are 90% to do with dealer service, not the tech themselves. Fiat's turbodiesels have been doing extensive duty in Opels, Vauuxhalls, Holdens, Saabs and Suzukis for years now, and they're known to be pretty dependable.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Let's hope this time Fiat is smart enough not to license its most advanced technology to its competitors, like it did with the first to market common rail turbo diesel systems that Audi, VW and many others have been using for years via Robert Bosch AG. Duh!
      • 5 Years Ago
      So if I understand this right ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5IrPcmMHqHE ), variable lift, variable duration valve control instead of a throttle plate. With all the benefits of opening the valves early or late for the desired results.

      Makes sense. Fiat always did say engines are merely air pumps.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I'm glad to see FIAT actually committed to HELPING Chrysler unlike Daimler which gave it the short end of the stick.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Too bad GM didn't buy Fiat when it had the chance. Did GM have to pay $2 billion to Fiat for not buying them?
      • 5 Years Ago
      While that technology is great, what Chrysler really needs is to get Fiat to send those Alfa Romeo designer's to do emergency surgery on the Caliber, Sebring and Avenger. Immediately as the patient is in critical condition.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Yes, the combination of Chrysler and "snapping pieces together" does sound attractive...
        • 5 Years Ago
        Say what you will about Chrysler, but they've had pretty good reliability and initial quality ratings for the last couple of years.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I'm skeptical simply because Fiat has a long history of iffy innovations like twin-spark. Furthermore, this is similar to valvetronic, and BMW came off as big fat liars about how great that was, saying it made GDI unnecessary instead of admitting they couldn't fit in the cylinder head with valvetronic (at the time).
      • 5 Years Ago
      I don't know about this Italian car = unreliable thing. I've had an alfa 147 since 1994 and it hasn't had a single problem, not one single thing has gone wrong (seriously). I think this Italian technology is great if it helps to increase gas milage while not decreasing engine performance.
        • 5 Years Ago
        How'd you get a 147 6 years before it first appeared at an auto show? I remember that the 147 came out while I was working in Milano in 2000/2001 (because I REALLY wanted one) so perhaps you mean 2004 instead of 1994? Or do you have an old 146?
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