BALOCCO, Italy — Chrysler Group may incorporate Fiat’s new MultiAir fuel-saving technology in some gasoline engines, Fiat sources say.

Fiat S.p.A. considers the variable valve timing system a breakthrough. The company says MultiAir improves power by about 10 percent and reduces fuel consumption 10 percent.

The MultiAir system provides direct control of air and combustion in engines, cylinder by cylinder and stroke by stroke, without using the conventional throttle. That saves energy wasted in traditional systems.  (Credit: Automotive News/Fiat)

MultiAir's electrohydraulic command of intake valves increases fuel economy.


Alfa Romeo sales are projected to be up 11% in 2009. Wow, big news, in a bad economy and global market, but we’re still talking relatively small numbers in auto sales terms. The total is expected to be 115-120,000.

They also made a big splash in Frankfurt with the announcement about MultiAir (above). The technology is impressive, though not necessarily unique. As the article details, the MultiAir electrohydraulic valve control is an advance for Fiat, and they plan on bringing it to Chrysler models.

Will it help to sell Chryslers? I doubt it. If the cars are otherwise uninspiring, it is hard to market valve technology to the average American car buyer. I’d rather see Fiat bring over their innovative cars like the MiTo which employs this technology, has great handling, impressive fuel economy, and styling which makes one take notice.