The first Fiat vehicle to come out of the Italian group’s partnership with the Chrysler Group is on its way. The Fiat Freemont, which is built on the base of the Dodge Journey, will go on sale in the second half of 2011. The car will be produced in the Mexican plant of Toluca where the Fiat 500 is produced for the American market.
Fiat contends that the Freemont name conjures up a sense of freedom, the pleasure of life in the open air, of adventure and the possibility of facing any situation that arises in daily life with equanimity.
Fiat says the Freemont is in fact a “factotum vehicle” designed to meet the diverse needs of families and those seeking a spacious, comfortable and versatile vehicle to cater to their everyday needs.
The vehicle’s very unique design, especially for a Fiat model, includes muscular, decisive lines that are expressed in a front end with brand new bumpers and grille. The rear end has been redesigned with the adoption of a new bumper and LED tail lights. This is also one of Fiat’s larger vehicles and looks like a crossover. The dimensions of the Freemont are length of 489 cm, width of 188 cm and height of 172 cm. This is in conjunction with the best wheelbase in its category – 289 cms.
The Fiat Freemont’s design aims for maximum roominess, comfort and versatility due to its 7 standard seats with a genuine third row that can be easily accessed because the doors can open ajar up to 90 degrees. The seats of the third row can be folded down to disappear completely below the floor and create a regular load platform. This creates overall luggage capacity of up to 1461 litres.
The Fiat Freemont’s second row can also be fitted with the innovative child booster system: This is a system that ensures children on board are sitting correctly, optimising the seatbelt geometry and guaranteeing greater protection.
Safety is further ensured by seven airbags, anti-lock braking system (ABS) with Brake Assist, Electronic Stability Program (ESP) with Hill-Holder and electronic roll mitigation (ERM) as standard on all vehicles.
The Fiat Freemont will be powered by a range of different engines. The Freemont will have front wheel drive with turbo diesel power units (140 hp or 170 hp 2.0 MultiJet) combined with a manual gearbox. At a later period, after the initial launch, the vehicle will also be available in 4×4 versions with 170 HP 2.0 MultiJet and 276 HP 3.6 petrol V6 engines, both with automatic transmissions.
The Freemont will be available in two variants (not yet named). Both the variants will offer 7 seats, triple-zone automatic climate control system, keyless entry system, cruise control, advanced trip computer, tyre pressure monitoring system (TPMS), fog lights and touchscreen radio with colour screen and controls on the steering wheel as standard. The top-of-the-line- version will include 17” alloys, touchscreen radio with 8.4” screen, SD card and DVD reader, Bluetooth system, rear parking sensors, fold-down door mirrors, automatic headlight activation, darkened rear windows and roof bars.
Pricing for the Freemont has not yet been revealed but don’t expect it to be much more than its cousin, the Dodge Journey, which currently retails between $22,245 and $32,740.