FireFly Turbo engine

Inside the Firefly Turbo Factory

A look at the 1.0 and 1.3 FireFly Turbo engines on the new Jeep Renegade and Fiat 500X

FCA Powertrain in Bielsko-Biała

The 1.0L and 1.3L FireFly Turbo engines, which debuted on the new Jeep Renegade and Fiat 500X, are the latest evolution of the FireFly engine family originally developed by FCA in Brazil.
These new engines are produced at the FCA Powertrain plant in Bielsko-Biała, Poland, the first Group plant to achieve World Class Manufacturing Gold level back in 2012.

The plant, which also produces the 1.3L MultiJet diesel and 0.9L TwinAir gasoline engines, employs around 1,200 people. FCA made an initial investment of over €200 million in a state-of-the-art production line with an automation level of more than 70%. This represents a significant technological leap forward for a site which, with more than 7.5 million engines produced since opening in 2003, has consistently ranked among the best manufacturing facilities in Europe.

Strategic Engines

FireFly Turbo

With impressive power ratings for their size – ranging from 120hp for the 1.0L, three-cylinder version up to 150hp and 180hp for the 1.3L, four-cylinder version – the FireFly Turbo engines boast a wide range of applications.

These engines were designed to deliver the best balance of performance and fuel efficiency in line with the Euro 6D regulations based on the Worldwide Harmonized Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP) and Real Driving Emissions test (RDE) now applicable for new vehicle type-approvals in the European Union.

The engines are made of 100% aluminum and weigh just 93 kg and 100 kg respectively. What makes them unique is their modular architecture (based on a 333 cm3 cylinder unit) which offers a high degree of standardization in both parts and production processes and adaptability for development into mild and plug-in hybrid versions. This characteristic, in particular, is essential to the Group’s plan to electrify 30 models across its entire brand portfolio by the end of 2022.

In order to test their robustness and reliability, the prototypes were subjected to over 75,000 hours of virtual analysis, 60,000 hours of bench tests, and 5 million kilometers on various roads around the world.

Increasing Production

The Bielsko-Biała plant began production of these new engine models on May 15th, 2018 and they were launched on the 2019 Jeep Renegade the following month, capping nearly two years of development and preparation. The new production is already running at around 65% capacity and this is set to increase in line with market demand and the launch of new models. At year-end 2018, 42,000 units of the FireFly Turbo had been produced, with the 1.0L three-cylinder version accounting for two-thirds of total production. Once the new production line is operating at full capacity, 450 people working three shifts will be able to produce around 200,000 units per year.

An Impressive Debut

First on the Jeep Renegade and then on the Fiat 500X, the FireFly Turbo engines have received favorable reviews. The 1.0L three-cylinder version has been called a “peppy and promising” engine that saves on fuel and is “agile in traffic”. The 1.3L four-cylinder version has “a bit more muscle” and acceleration, which comes in handy on the highway.
The engines on both the Renegade and the 500X are identical except for calibration of the control unit to take account of their different uses – more city driving for the 500X and more off-road for the Renegade, which also offers an exclusive 1.3L, 180hp version.

Related Stories

Fiat 500 and Panda Hybrids

Read More

FCA Heritage Hub. The Home of Passion

Read More