Chrysler to Begin Delivering Hybrid SUVs in August
June 18, 2008
Chrysler LLC announced on June 17 that it will deliver its first hybrid vehicles to showrooms this August. The two hybrid sport utility vehicles (SUVs)—the 2009 Dodge Durango HEMI Hybrid and the 2009 Chrysler Aspen HEMI Hybrid—will achieve fuel economies of up to 20 miles per gallon, marking a 40% improvement in fuel economy in city driving and a 25% improvement overall. Both vehicles couple a two-mode hybrid system with Chrysler's 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 engine to produce 385 horsepower and 380 foot-pounds of torque. The two-mode hybrid system was developed in partnership with General Motors Corporation (GM), Mercedes Benz, and the BMW Group, and has already been deployed in several GM vehicles. Chrysler's engine also includes technology to deactivate up to four cylinders when the engine is at low load. According to Chrysler, the new hybrid SUVs will be priced nearly $8,000 below the competition, with the manufacturer's suggested retail price for the Durango Hybrid set at $45,350, while the Aspen Hybrid is set at $45,570. See the Chrysler press release.