• Mar 19, 2010
Chrysler Pentastar V6 engine begins production – Click above for high-res image gallery

The artist engine formerly known as Prince Phoenix has officially hit the assembly lines at the Chrysler Group's plant in Trenton, Michigan. The first version of the mill, which now bears the Pentastar moniker, displaces 3.6 liters and will see its first production application in the engine bay of the brand new 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee.

Expect this all aluminum, 60-degree, dual-overhead cam (with variable valve timing) powerplant to see lots of use in the near-term future – Chrysler boasts that the Pentastar V6 will replace seven current V6 engines. In the new Grand Cherokee, the Pentastar will put out 280 horsepower (a 22-percent increase) at 6,400 rpm and 260 pound-feet of torque (an 11-percent improvement) at 4,800 rpm.

Just as importantly, Chrysler tells us that the new engine will be 11 percent more fuel efficient than the unit it replaces, and it will run on either regular 87-octane gasoline or E85. This family of engines represent a $730 million investment, and the 822,000-square-foot Trenton facility will be able to produce more than 400,000 engines per year. See the complete press release after the break.


Show full PR text
Chrysler Group LLC Celebrates Production Launch of Pentastar V-6 Engine at All-new Trenton, Mich., Facility
  • Governor, Wayne County Executive, Mayor and UAW join employees for celebration
  • All-new 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 to replace seven current V-6 engines, resulting in flexibility, efficient operations and significant cost savings to the company
  • Michigan becomes center of Chrysler Group's powertrain offensive
  • Nearly $1 billion in powertrain investments in Michigan since 2007


Auburn Hills, Mich., Mar 19, 2010 - With Michigan Governor Jennifer M. Granholm and other local officials in attendance, Chrysler Group LLC celebrated the launch of its all-new Pentastar V-6 engine at an event today at the Trenton (Mich.) South Engine Plant (TSEP).

In addition to the Governor, Wayne County Executive Robert Ficano, Trenton Mayor Gerald Brown, UAW Chrysler Department Assistant Director Tim Bressler and other local officials joined Chrysler Group executives and Trenton South employees in recognizing the importance of the plant and the new engine in the future success of the Company.

"The Pentastar engine is a cornerstone of Chrysler's efforts to re-invent its business model with strong, brand-focused, world-class quality products," said Scott Garberding, Head of Manufacturing, Chrysler Group LLC. "The new Trenton South plant demonstrates the Chrysler Group's commitment to supporting economic development in Michigan. It also acknowledges the support of the International UAW and our outstanding workforce for helping us create an engine plant that can compete with the best in the world. Their efforts will help establish Trenton South as a premier manufacturer of fuel-efficient engines in support of the Company's future growth."

Chrysler Group's all-new flex-fuel Pentastar V-6 is the most advanced V-6 engine in the company's history. This new line of V-6 engines will contribute to an overall fuel-efficiency improvement of more than 25 percent across the Chrysler, Ram Truck, Jeep® and Dodge product lineup. More refined and fuel-efficient, the Pentastar engine will ultimately replace seven current Chrysler Group V-6 engines and utilize advanced technologies from the Fiat alliance such as Multiair, direct-injection and turbocharging.

The first application of this engine will be in the all-new 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee, due out in the second quarter this year.

The start of production at Trenton South represents one piece of the Chrysler Group's revamped powertrain strategy. In December 2009, the Company announced that it would invest $179 million in its Global Engine Manufacturing Alliance (GEMA) plant in Dundee, Mich., to produce the 1.4-liter, 16-valve Fully Integrated Robotized Engine (FIRE). Together, these two plants - with a combined investment of nearly $1 billion - position Michigan at the center of Chrysler Group's powertrain offensive.

"With the start of production here in Trenton and the recently announced investment in Dundee, Chrysler Group has helped affirm Michigan's position as the world's leader in automotive innovation and excellence," said Gov. Granholm. "These projects further demonstrate that Michigan has the competitive business climate, infrastructure and talented workforce to compete in the global marketplace."

Chrysler Group announced a $730 million investment in the Pentastar program when it broke ground on the all-new 822,000-square-foot facility in May 2007. The plant will have an annual manufacturing capacity of more than 400,000 engines.

"Three years ago, Chrysler Group demonstrated its confidence in its workforce by investing in its powertrain operations," said the UAW's Bressler. "Today, the UAW members at Trenton are excited to participate in building the next generation of high quality, fuel-efficient engines for Chrysler's great lineup of vehicles and thereby, ensuring the Company's future success."


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  • 74 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      I have a hunch this one is going to be a honey of a good motor. As good as the computers and simulations are, I think they still get disappointments when they go into testing often -- this one as luck would have it was the exact opposite. I believe it surpassed even their most optimistic expectations.

      They are going to use versions of it in virtually all their cars and truck as I understand. ==
      • 4 Years Ago
      Geeze, with all this arguing, you'd think the 3.6L wasn't an improvement at all. Not having to deal with the 2.7L thru 4.0L is a good thing, folks.
      • 4 Years Ago
      this is good but not good enough with Ford and Chevy's new V6's pushing over 300hp...someone mentioned it was cheaper to make than Ford and Chevy's and yes..it shows.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Wow, they are behind GM/Ford in high feature V6s. Was kind of hoping this engine would have similar output/features to the new v6 going in the 'stang/the v6 in the CTS and Camaro LS.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Although if they managed to make it as reliable as the 3800 series 2 from GM it will still be a success.
      • 4 Years Ago
      It's about time they release a new, more fuel efficient engine
        • 4 Years Ago
        QUote: ""Remove head from ass, rinse, repeat.""



        Pardon me clown, but you're pulling those figures out your third orafice.

        The Borrego gets nowhere near 22mph highway with either it's V6 or V8.

        All the reviews report the Borrego V6 at: 16 City, 20 Hwy, and 17 combined.

        The Grand Cherokee with the V6 at: 18 City, 22 Hwy, and 19 combined.

        And again, the whole point of this article is Chrysler's new Pentastar V6, which is expected to achieve at least another 10% in mileage with a significant power boost, making it a much more viable option in the Grand Cherokee. 24 mpg for a vehicle like the Grand Cherokee, with real transfer cases and off road capability, is pretty damn good.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Quote: ""So it will go from 21 mpg hwy to an almost equally pathetic 23 mpg? The freaking 337 hp V8 Kia Borrego gets 22 mpg! I hope I'm missing something here.""


        The KIA Borrego gets nowhere near 22 MPG. EPA combined is 16 and the SUV is noted by all reviews for its terrible fuel economy, with most getting a combined 14-15 mpg and 19 highway. And of course it goes without saying for a KIA: the Borrego is noted as well for shoddy build quality, poor fit and finish, below average reliability, poor handling,etc.

        Chrysler getting 280 hp, an increase of nearly 25%, while increasing fuel economy at the same time, is a notable accomplishment and puts them well ahead of the competition.

        And of course troll, it goes without saying you pulled the "pathetic" 23mpg figure for the pentastar out of your third orifice. The mpg rating will depend on the vehicle application and will likely be closer to 28 highway mpg for a vehicle like the Charger.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @MikeW:

        +1 on everything you said, but they've been developing this engine for a long time now. When they started, their main issue was a power deficit (and to a lesser degree, a technology deficit). With this replacing everything from the hideous 2.7 all the way up to the 4.0, I would imagine the payback on going to this motor will be higher than putting the same development money into a transmission.

        That said, Chrysler DOES need new transmissions soon. From what I understand, Chrysler was supposed to get small-car 6ATs from Mercedes, but that obviously isn't going to happen now. Maybe Fiat has something for them...
        • 4 Years Ago
        Chrysler doesn't have a modern transmission.
        The Benz 5 speed automatic, w5a580, doesn't have any ratio spread-4.3:1, neither does their own 545rfe-4.5:1.

        KIA has a similar problem with the Borrego. The Hyundai 5 speed automatic-5r45, which is coupled to the V6, is ratio deficient-4.5:1. That is why the V6 gets worse highway mileage than the V8, which has the ZF 6 speed automatic-6:1.
        V6 4x2: 17,21; V8 4x2: 15,22
        V6 4x4: 16,21; V8 4x4: 15,20

        So until Chrysler gets a non-obsolete transmission, they will be up the proverbial creek. KIA at least has a way out, direct injection 'lambda2' V6 300hp, coupled to the new 8 speed automatic. That combination could return 18/24 for 4x2, and 17/23 for 4x4, saving the Borrego from imminent death.
      • 4 Years Ago
      WOW. It takes $730 million to produce a new line of engines? sweet baby jesus!

      This explains why everyone has been slow to bring emerging engine tech to market.

      OR... chrysler were so far behind in engineering for so long that all that money was spent on playing catch-up.

      They do have DOHC vvt on their 2.7 though so that doesn't make sense.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @AngeloD

        "It was developed during Daimler's ownership of Chrysler and with engineering input from Daimler."

        The Daimler/Chrysler Merger was announced in May of 08. US and German regulatory hurdles, boards of director approval, Union approval, and other legal obstacles would take months to iron out. The first year of merged operations was 1999. The Jeep GC with the all new 4.7 was introduced in June of 08. The Merger had not gone through at that point, and even if it had, development times necessary for "clean sheet" power-train development is measured in years. Clearly, Daimler had nothing to do with the 4.7.

        The new V6 however; is a different story, it does have Daimler DNA, as it's development began under Daimler control. The new V6 and the Mercedes based 5 speed automatic will be one of the few positive long term results of Daimler ownership.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Erm.. i can't find a single 3.7 motor in Chrysler's lineup. I browsed around mercedes' site for a bit and couldn't find a 3.7 in their lineup either.

        Are you referring to the 2.7?
        The one that's got a knock problem @ 34k miles already in my girlfriend's 2007 charger....
        • 4 Years Ago
        That's why i said Chrysler's lineup and not Chrysler group's lineup.

        Yeah that SOHC 3.7 looks like Ford's old SOHC 4.0 - godawful specs.

        I wasn't aware that they produced a motor that was actually worse than their 3.5 though, so props to you guys, lol
        • 4 Years Ago
        A lot of the 730 million was used to create a new engine plant:

        "An investment of $730 million for a new plant in Trenton, Mich., to produce the "Phoenix" family of V-6 engines. The new Trenton plant, located adjacent to the existing Trenton Engine Plant, will have an annual capacity of 440,000 engines and is expected to begin production in 2009. The Phoenix family of engines is the first of these initiatives that will go into production."

        http://www.allpar.com/mopar/phoenix-engines.html

        No doubt the missed 2009 date was due to the BR filing.
        • 4 Years Ago
        No, i'm not trying to troll on here.
        Look at the huge improvement in torque ( at every rpm ), horsepower ( at every rpm ), and fuel economy that ford's 3.7 has over their SOHC 4.0.

        The new 3.7 even outperforms their low end 4.6 v8, at least in peak numbers. The right gearing could easily make up for the discrepancy in torque below 3,000rpm.

        Chrysler's motor hasn't hit the streets for testing yet, but i'm betting that the difference will equally as drastic.

        Time to ditch those old 1990's tech motors.
        • 4 Years Ago
        my bad! i misread Chrysler's site.

        Only the 2.4 has vvt, all the v6's are just standard DOHCs ( WOW, they really ARE behind )
        • 4 Years Ago
        Chrysler's 2.7 does not have VVT.
        http://www.allpar.com/photos/mopar/27.jpg

        What vehicle used MB 3 valve 3.7 V6? outside the US market?
        The Chrysler 3.7 v6 (2 valve) was the 4.7 sans 2 cylinders (and a longer stroke)
        • 4 Years Ago
        Unless things have changed, Once you produce a working model, after years of design and research, you must submit such engine to the Feds for a 5-year EPA certification process. That means something started by the then New Chrysler Corporation would have had to work it's way through the Daimler years and then Cerabus and then bankruptcy to see light of day under the Feds and Fiat. I believe the process may have been speeded up after regulation has almost destroyed every US industry.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Ignorant comments.

        For example Chrysler has had the Daimler designed 3.7L for quite a while. It is a strong reliable motor and very competitive with similar offerings from other manufacturers.

        The Chrysler 3.7L uses the same basic Daimler design as does Hyundai-KIA's V6s developed during Hyundai's 2000-2004 joint development agreement with Daimler-Chrysler.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Based on the rest of Chrysler's product line, I'm going to be guessing they were well behind the curve, so needed to catch up.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Chrysler had little money spent on newer tech thanks to the previous 2 owners. Hopefully they will continue to invest in advancements with their new overlords.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Come on 300hp v6 in the Challenger!!! Will still be slower, but at least its actually purchasable then.
        • 4 Years Ago
        3.64 axle in that sports package instead of the 3.07.
        245/45 20's?
        • 4 Years Ago
        Agree. If the first application of this engine is making 280hp they should have no problem matching the mustang and camaro's 300hp+ for the 2011 Challenger.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Electric power steering? Dual exhaust?
        Maybe a sporty tune, ala Hyundai RS version of 3.8 V6.
        Then 300hp.

        Wider tires 215/65 17 out, 235/55 18 in.
        Might not be 15 flat in the 1/4 mile, but certainly better than the ancient 3.5
      • 4 Years Ago
      I have a 3.3L V-6 with almost 300k on and its still running strong, that being said it is a lump it eats fuel at the rate of a big truck average 14mpg in the city and a whooping 18 maybe 20 on the highway. Its a second vehicle and I cant see getting rid of it till it finally die's as we quite literally paid $1 for it... hmm wait lemons racing could be in this things future lol. The new 3.7 should be good after all it cant be any worse than whats out there now! They should really pay Ford for some Ecoboost motors tho.
      • 4 Years Ago
      This is very good news, especially for the Jeep brand which sorely needs a fuel efficient engine for their line of SUVs.

      Also, a part of me makes me glad that gasoline engines aren't going away anytime soon. Innovation and need to make more fuel efficient engines means newer kinds of engines. Newer kinds of engines mean more jobs that will produce these engines. And, the sight of employees having a job making them is a welcome sight in this economy.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Quote: ""Unfortunately Jeep is stuck with obsolete transmissions.""


        B.S., the 6 speed manual is as advanced as any, and the electronic controllers for things like hill start assist, hill descent regulation, etc. are well beyond most other manufacturers offerings.

        • 4 Years Ago
        It is nice that they offer a manual transmission, but isn't the general preference for off-roaders to use an automatic?

        There isn't much choice in the Wrangler/Liberty, super ancient 4 speed auto [4.1:1], or 6 speed stick [5.3:1]. At least the Nitro offered the 4.0 & w5a580

        The electronic trickery of the ABS & stability control [accessing the accelerometers] has nothing to do with the transmission. [they are nice, and make driving a stick more palatable]
        The RAV4 V6 has downhill assist control & hill-start assist
        In VW's Touareg, there was a mechanical anti-rollback function in 2nd gear [don't think that it carries over to the 8 speed auto]

        Jeep needs 6:1 ratio spread, or better.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Angelo's right. I haven't seen similar offerings in other SUVs that Jeep has.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Unfortunately Jeep is stuck with obsolete transmissions.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Why the big deal over a cartridge oil filter? Welcome to 2010 Chrysler.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Toyota's 2gr-fe 3.5 V6.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Quote:Why the big deal over a cartridge oil filter? Welcome to 2010 Chrysler.




        That's a B.S. comment.

        What other mass production V6s have a cartridge oil filter?
      • 4 Years Ago
      The current Chrysler 4.0 liter V6 has 251 hp and 17/25 mpg.
      Why isn't this engine the mainstay? It's rock solid & fast with the 6 speed tranny.
        • 4 Years Ago
        It wasn't a 'truck' engine.
        Timing belt, mid-grade fuel usage, 60 degree vs. 90 degree
        • 4 Years Ago
        Because its not all that refined, and based on an architecture from the early 90s.
      • 4 Years Ago
      This is great! This is just what Chrysler needs. Keep up the good work boys!
        • 4 Years Ago
        So that investment comes out to $1825 per engine for the first year or $182.5 per engine over the next 10 years. Seems like a good investment to me.
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