Chrysler Portal concept revealed, autonomous MPV for the future

Chrysler concept envisions autonomous connected future

Chrysler's Portal concept might be shorter than a Pacifica with its 118.2-inch wheelbase, but its completely flat floor and huge openings on both sides should make it roomy and easier to access while its compact size provides benefits in the city.

According to The Verge, FCA describes the Portal as "next generation family transportation designed by millennials for millennials".

The software powering the car's features - and enabling connections between other vehicles and infrastructure - also supports ride hailing and ride sharing as standard and, as this is a auto for digital natives, social media support and the ability to capture and share spontaneous multimedia mementos on the move are also baked in. An interesting gimmick is the facial recognition feature - so the Portal can configure the driver and passenger's preferred settings, also with the help of a voice biometrics system.

The Portal is powered by a a lithium-ion battery pack, rated at about 100 kilowatt-hours (kWh), and can run for more than 250 miles after a full charge.

Image Chrysler
Image Chrysler

If the vehicle determines the driver is not monitoring the road or driving conditions change, it alerts the driver to retake manual control. The concept is capable of level three autonomy, but it can be easily upgraded to level four as technology progresses. It is constantly "talking" with its surroundings through the array of sensors and internet connectivity - a main focus for designers. All the technology bits have been developed with Samsung and Panasonic, but Chrysler hasn't disclosed yet who is behind its self-driving software.

Flexibility and social communication are paramount inside the Chrysler Portal concept.

FCA will hold a press conference Tuesday at 1 CES - GeekWire will be reporting on the announcement from Las Vegas tomorrow, so stay tuned for more.

On the inside, the Portal's modular interior can offer seating for up to six people, but also ten docking stations for phones and tablets - because nobody carries just one mobile device anymore. A livestream is available. It's called the Chrysler Portal, and while it sports a sleek, glass-heavy design, it's also basically a minivan in its shape and layout.