EV Cars

The Chrysler Halcyon Concept is reminiscent of future EV days

Chrysler unveiled the beautiful Halcyon Concept EV on Tuesday, seeking to redefine the brand as it transitions to electric vehicles.

In contrast to the Chrysler Airflow concept The Halcyon Concept four-door coupe, which debuted in 2022 as a near-production-ready electric crossover and debuted in 2025, will never enter production. So what is it and how does it help a brand that makes more concept cars than it sells models?

“Halcyon represents a time of happiness, joy and serenity,” Chrysler brand CEO Chris Feuell told attendees at a press conference in late January.

Merriam-Webster is less confident. It defines Halcyon as “most commonly used to describe a happy and prosperous time in the past that is remembered as better than today.”

Chrysler Halcyon concept

Chrysler Halcyon concept

Whatever the case, Chrysler is at a crossroads like never before in its nearly 100-year history. The Halcyon Concept has few performance specs but plenty of promise, realigning the brand to evolve from the discontinued 300C sedan and the lone Chrysler Pacifica by shedding light on everything from battery-electric minivans to lithium-sulfur Battery packs that are said to produce up to 200 hp. Miles of range in 5 minutes of fast charging.

Chrysler said the Lyten concept includes 800-volts Lithium-sulfur batteries that use no cobalt, nickel or manganese as cathodes, resulting in a 60% lower carbon footprint than other “best-in-class” lithium-ion batteries (NMC) currently on the market. Lithium-sulfur cells, such as those made by the Californian company Lyten, have long been touted for their density, but their lifespan is virtually unproven. They are still in the pilot phase.

Another development touted by Chrysler is dynamic wireless charging in traffic, as tested by its sole parent brand Stellantis in Italy. Feuell admitted it takes time, but Chrysler is prioritizing efforts in “certain cities and geographic areas” to leverage it in partnerships with tech companies and governments.

“This is a concept vehicle and it integrates technologies that are on the horizon in our long-range plans,” Feuell said.

STLA Large platform

STLA Large platform

In the short term, the Halcyon Concept is based on some specific Chrysler facts. It uses the STLA Large platform This will be the basis for eight global models launched over the next two years. With a maximum length of 201.8 inches, the upcoming electric crossovers will be a few centimeters shorter than the current three-row Chrysler Pacifica and Jeep Grand Cherokee L vehicles.

There will be 400 and 800 volt versions in the STLA Large, but one can only speculate about the drive system of the Halcyon and the upcoming vehicles.

Stellantis will initially pursue a multi-energy strategy consisting of internal combustion engines, plug-in hybrids and battery electrics until the goal of being fully electric in 2038 is achieved.

“For now, we will have a multi-energy strategy for Chrysler because of the Pacifica PHEV,” Feuell told Green Car Reports. “No ICE is planned for future products. It’s important for Chrysler to have the STLA Large difference as situations and needs change.”

Chrysler Halcyon concept

Chrysler Halcyon concept

Sales of the Pacifica Plug-in Hybrid were robust, increasing 60% in 2023 and accounting for 20% of Pacifica sales. Chrysler is targeting a 34% Pacifica share through the plug-in by 2024.

The 2025 electric crossover will be followed by a refresh of the Chrysler Pacifica at Chrysler’s pace, and another electric vehicle will follow. A electric minivan seems likely, but it’s a matter of when.

“I have said that we are transitioning our portfolio to full battery electric vehicles, so that definitely points to us bringing a BEV minivan to market,” Feuell said.

Clues can be found in the Halcyon and not just in the new Chrysler emblem made from crushed CDs that will adorn the refreshed Pacifica. Based on a sketch rather than a demo, the 2+2 Halcyon’s rear seat surfaces slide into the hatch so that the seat surfaces are flush with the seat backs, freeing up floor space. It’s an interesting alternative to the Pacifica’s incomparable Stow ‘n Go seats, which can be recessed into the floor. The battery in the floor of an electric vehicle would prevent this without a bizarre packaging twist.

Chrysler Halcyon concept

Chrysler Halcyon concept

The Halcyon borrows from last year’s Chrysler concept in the Synthesis cockpit, which integrates the STLA Brain hardware and software for the infotainment system, the semi-autonomous drive system and AI learning for driver preferences. The STLA Brain was featured on a 15.6-inch touchscreen in the Halcyon, and of all the concept’s components, it was “pretty market ready,” Chrysler said. It will debut first in the 2025 electric crossover, followed by other vehicle launches in North America.

Other parts of the Halcyon are more theoretical, including entry. The long and low sedan sits 4.0 inches off the ground and features single-panel barn doors that open. But to get into the car, you have to flip up a third door or a butterfly window hinged to the roof so you can stick your head in. At 5’7″ tall I would have had to sit back or chop my head off to close the butterfly and take out doors.

The glass dome, which provides a nearly 360-degree view, makes up 45% of the vehicle’s interior space and also defines its exterior. The windshield extends its tongue so far forward that it ends beyond the front axle and near the Halcyon’s halved front lip. The lips divide to form an air tunnel or blade that allows air to flow around the glass bubble. Its design is similar to the front wing of the Dodge Charger Daytona SRT Banshee Concept.

Wherever Chrysler stands, the Halcyon proves that the brand is changing and will evolve beyond the 2025 electric crossover.

Chrysler Halcyon concept

Chrysler Halcyon concept

“The Airflow concept was developed before we reformulated the brand positioning,” explained Feuell. “It was a good start, but we knew we could push things a little edgier and more technical, and I think what we see here with the Halcyon Concept represents the future design direction of the brand.”

The concept proves Chrysler is more than just a minivan by transforming Chrysler’s Halcyon days into something that’s ahead, not behind.

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