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Chrysler isn’t universally known for technological innovation, but the brand at the heart of the Stellantis automaker wants to change that.
revealed around CES 2023, the Chrysler synthesis demonstrator is a mock-up of what the automaker claims will be its vehicle cockpit of the future. With a massive array of screens and smart software, it’s setting expectations as Chrysler prepares to refresh its aging lineup with a fleet of electric vehicles in the years to come.
The two-seater cockpit demonstrator is dominated by two screens in the dashboard. One almost reaches over the dashboard, while a second, smaller screen is embedded in the corner of the dashboard on the passenger side. While passenger screens are already available in vehicles like the Jeep Grand Cherokee from Chrysler’s sister brand Stellantis, this is a more elegant application that makes it appear as if the entire dashboard is one large screen, measuring 37.2 inches in size.
Behind the screens are three software platforms: STLA Smart Cockpit, STLA Brain and STLA AutoDrive. STLA Smart Cockpit manages the displays, while STLA Brain enables basic functions such as over-the-air (OTA) updates and a virtual assistant that syncs the car with the driver’s phone or smart home devices, as well as parking and charging options for recommend electric vehicles or handle e-commerce transactions.
STLA AutoDrive is a driver assistance system that allows the driver to take their hands off the wheel and their eyes off the road in certain situations, Chrysler claims. When switched on, the Synthesis cockpit reconfigures itself to allow drivers to do other tasks – like video conferencing or karaoke – that would be inadvisable without a high level of automation.
Before starting the journey, the car greets its driver via biometric authentication and can then create a route plan based on personal timetables, the weather and the car’s charge level.
The physical cockpit demonstrator is based on the Chrysler Airflow concept, an electric SUV unveiled at CES 2022. Chrysler claims it’s made from 100% sustainable materials, with all plastics coming from post-industrial sources or harvested from oceans.
However, this high-tech cockpit does not correspond to any specific production vehicle. The Airflow is still just a concept vehicle, and Chrysler has been vague on how close the Synthesis layout is to being production-ready. Chrysler will be the first Stellantis brand to use the STLA Smart Cockpit, STLA Brain and STLA AutoDrive technology platforms in North America, but they may appear in a different shell than what we’re seeing here. Chrysler has a habit of making bug CES announcements that go nowhere, dating back to the 2017 portal concept.
Chrysler plans to launch its first electric vehicle in 2025 and go all-electric in 2028. Given what lies ahead, it’s not a difficult task Setting the 300th Sedan, the only Chryslers remaining will be the Pacifica and Voyager fleet-only minivans.
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