The Chrysler Portal concept that debuted at last week’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas is bound for production—eventually. At the Detroit auto show, two high-ranking executives at FCA, including CEO Sergio Marchionne, confirmed interest in building something like the Portal within the next few years.
Speaking to reporters, Marchionne said FCA will build something like the concept after 2018. He said the Windsor Assembly plant in Ontario, Canada, which builds the Pacifica minivan on which the Portal concept is based, would be a “natural place” to build the futuristic people-mover. FCA’s head honcho would not provide specific timing for a production model, however.
Further cementing FCA’s intentions, the company’s North American passenger car chief, Tim Kuniskis, told The Detroit News: “We haven’t been shy to say that we see the Portal as what we view as the future of family transportation. People ask me, is it a minivan? Is it a crossover? Is it a UV (utility vehicle)? We just say it’s the fifth generation of cars.”
Though he wouldn’t comment on production of the Portal specifically, Kuniskis did say FCA is “gauging interest of future product development.”
As we previously reported, the Portal concept previews an electric vehicle with dual articulated doors, a wide openings to the cabin, and three rows of seats. It also uses an electric drivetrain with a 100-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack that FCA says grants 250 miles of range. Marchionne said he believes affordable long-range electric vehicleswill be available by 2021-2022.