DaimlerChrysler has released some details on the upcoming 2007 Dodge Caliber, its Neon replacement. The Caliber is scheduled to go on sale next year. Chrysler has teamed up with Mitsubishi and Hyundai to develop the four cylinders that will be used in the Caliber. They have also chosen to source the Caliber's new CVT transmission JATCO, a Japanese supplier. The Caliber will also feature a new all-electronic AWD system that will provided power to the front wheels most of the time, diverting power only when necessary to the rear. This way there is very little lost in the way of fuel economy.
The Asian connection may prove to be a winning one for the Caliber. Chrysler is investing a lot into its small car platform. The Caliber will likely be a combination of American style, Asian drive train, and European handling. This may be a winning combination for the global Caliber, which will also be sold with a diesel engine in other markets. The choice to use a CVT is a wise one, which should give terrific fuel economy and performance from the Caliber?s choice of engines. Also, knowing that the Caliber will feature AWD does open up the possibility that the next SRT4 will be AWD, despite Chrysler?s current defense for not making the Neon SRT4 AWD.