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Over a year ago, back in 2019, the large automobile Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) announced plans to start developing more plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles. A year later, and that clearly isn’t the case, seeing as how the automaker had to sign a temporary contract with Tesla to pool fleets together so that FCA could meet more strict emission regulations and European CO2 Emission standards. Soon after, FCA partnered with ENGIE and Enel X to support the development of private and public charging solutions for upcoming plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles, such as the Fiat BEV (battery-electric vehicle) or the Jeep Renegade PHEV. Did anyone think a Dodge Durango would be added to the list?
Yes, it’s true. Although the Dodge Durango hasn’t received much freshening up since 2014, the Dodge SUV still punched in some big numbers. Every year, Dodge sells about 65,000 Durango units. Like any smart automaker, the best way to move into the alternative fuel market isn’t to introduce a whole new vehicle but add hybrid functionalities to an already popular vehicle. With the added fuel economy hybrids can offer, anyone who loves a Dodge Durango for its size and towing capacity will love it even more for the fuel economy boost.
Speaking of powertrains, the 2019 Dodge Durango currently has two options, a 3.6-liter V6 and 5.7-liter Hemi V8. These are the same engines that were offered with the next-generation 2019 Ram 1500, one of two vehicles that were released with the mild-hybrid system eTorque. The next-gen 2018 Jeep Wrangler JL also came with eTorque. Back when FCA first discussed plans to start going green, two of the brands that shared the spotlight were Jeep and Ram, being two of the most successful automotive brands under the FCA umbrella.
Not only does the eTorque system act as a hybrid component, able to offer hybrid functionality, but the real prize is the added boost of torque from 0 RPM. Usually, when a vehicle discussed how much torque it can generate, such as the 5.7-liter HEMI V8 engine, able to generate 390 lb-ft of torque, can only do that with the engine revving and making multiple rotations, the “R” in RPM. This number is usually in the thousands to reach the maximum amount of torque, but with eTorque, a vehicle can get as much as 90 lb-ft of torque once the engine is turned on. That makes a huge difference in trucks and SUVs.
So, where does the idea of eTorque in the Dodge Durango come from? A report from MoparInsiders detailing plans for the FCA in the near future. For one, we know the Dodge Durango is here to stay. Not only because of its success, but because it shares the same platform of the Jeep Grand Cherokee. Both vehicles are assembled at the Jefferson North Assembly Plant in Michigan, and FCA plans to invest some $3 billion into the plant. Second, the report mentions a mild-hybrid Dodge Durango due for 2020. With Fiat Chryslers Automobiles mainly making use of the eTorque system while testing out the waters of green fuel, a successful and popular SUV from another brand is the way to go,
Follow us on NowCar social media and find out what happens next with the Dodge Durango.