LINK to other vehicles: News Headlines300 SRT8: The flagship brand gets a pavement-eating version of the 300 luxury sedan, powered by a 6.4-liter Hemi V-8 with 470 horsepower. It's supposed to go from zero to 60 in the high 4-second range with a top speed of 175 mph. Chrysler promises great handling, too.
TOP-SECRET COMPACT: With the U.S. auto market moving toward compact cars for fuel economy and cost reasons, Dodge has been left at the curb with lackluster Caliber. But the new Chrysler-Fiat company is promising far better things with the debut of a new compact sedan in the second quarter of next year. The name hasn't been released yet, but it's code-named "PF," and it's based on the stylish Alfa Romeo Giulietta. The sporty Italian compact is powered by engines ranging from a 1.4-liter turbo with 120 horsepower to a 235 horsepower turbocharged and direct-injected four-cylinder. Alfa also has some small diesels powering the Giulietta, but it's unlikely they will come to the United States. Dodge has released no information on the car but says it will debut at the Detroit auto show in January.
VIPER: The ultimate roadster makes a comeback in 2012 after a one-year absence. Chrysler says it will look different from the 2010 version and will handle better with improvements to its chassis. Horsepower is likely to increase from the 2010 version, which had a whopping 600 with a special V-12 engine. The company has released little information on the car.
CHARGER SRT8: Gets a 470 horsepower, 6.4-liter Hemi V-8 that features 45 more horsepower and 50 more lb.-ft. of torque than its predecessor. Zero-to-60 time in the high 4-second range.
FIAT 500 ABARTH: Named for Italian race-car maker Abarth, which is now part of Fiat, the sportier version of the Fiat 500 is scheduled to go on sale in the United States in the first half of 2012. The 500 Abarth is currently sold in other countries with a 135-horsepower 1.4-liter engine, but the U.S. version could get Fiat's turbocharged 170-horsepower 1.4-liter. Fiat plans to announce more in November at the Los Angeles Auto Show.
FIAT 500 CABRIO: The 2012 Fiat Cabrio convertible went on sale earlier this summer. Its fully automatic cloth top can retract at speeds of up to 60 mph. Drivers can choose from three cloth top colors — red, black or tan — to go with the 14 exterior and 12 interior color combinations. The 101-horsepower, four-cylinder engine can get up to 38 mpg when paired with a five-speed manual transmission. The Cabrio starts at $19,500.
ELECTRIC FIAT 500: Fiat plans to sell an all-electric version of the Fiat 500 in the second half of 2012. No other details have been released.
FF: New for 2012, the FF is Ferrari's first four-wheel-drive car. The company says the FF also is its most powerful four-seater ever. It has a new 6.3-liter V-12 with 651 horsepower and can go from zero to 62 mph in 3.7 seconds. The price hasn't been released, but Ferrari says it will be around $300,000.