Don’t expect to see Wyoming ranchers driving them anytime soon – the plan is to build and test 140 of them, apparently – but Chrysler has shown off a Ram plug-in hybrid that uses proprietary battery technology from the Canadian company Electrovaya.
A 12 kilowatt-hour (kWh) battery powers the vehicle in electric mode, giving it up to 20 miles of range. Electrovaya also said it provided the mechanical, thermal, electrical and electronic subsystems for the rig.
According to Edmunds.com, the hybrid truck, which was on display at the Washington D.C. Auto Show last week, was partly funded by a $48-million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy. Edmunds said the 12 kWh battery is paired with a 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 and beats typical fuel economy for such a vehicle by 65 percent. A company spokesman told Edmunds that Chrysler was optimistic about hybrid trucks because with their bulk, they’re better equipped to carry weighty battery packs.
Delivery of this special plug-in hybrid Ram trucks is expected to begin this summer, though it looks as if the vehicle will be going to commercial fleets only for the time.