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Plug-in, two-mode hybrid Ram pickups hit road in testing
by USA Today Feed on May. 28, 2011, under USA Today News
http://tucsoncitizen.com/usa-today-...-mode-hybrid-ram-pickups-hit-road-in-testing/
(this was in the Chicago Tribune as well)



The trucks also have onboard generation capacity of 6.6kW and on military bases will be tested feeding power back to the electric grid — known as “reverse power flow.” The juice also can be used for power tools from outlets in the bed.

Chrysler emphasized this is only a test: “There are no plans for a production version of the PHEV Ram 1500 truck at this time.”

Ram 1500 PHEV specs according to Chrysler:

  • A 12.9kWhr lithium ion battery pack under the second-row seat. It’s liquid- cooled for consistent temperature.’
  • Full regenerative braking.
  • A 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 engine and a two-mode hybrid transmission. The Hemi shuts off half the cylinders at highway speeds. For better mileage, the front axle also can be disconnected when not needed.
  • A 6.6 kilowatt (kW) on-board charger for AC power generation for electric tools and for the “reverse power flow.” A 240 volt/30 amp four-prong outlet and 120 volt/20 amp duplex outlet power strip in the bed can power on-the-job tools.
 

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Cool idea. I know there have been posts here in the past wondering if the Volt's gas powered generator could be used to provide emergency power during an outage.
 

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Very cool! Hopefully GM will do something with the Silverado 1500, and offer it in both hybrid and Voltec formats in the coming years, although I have no opposition against a Ram PHEV.
 

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"Very cool! Hopefully GM will do something with the Silverado 1500"

Actually, GM's original mild hybrid pickup (you'd have to go back to 2005 model year or so to find it) had outlets run by the NiMH battery that also ran the BAS. As you used the outlets, the truck would run occasionally to keep the battery charged.

I don't think this is a bad idea and someone who would buy the truck anyway would probably find this useful but whether or not it captures more sales is a question. Most of the people that would want this feature would be perfectly happy with a generator (and probably already have one), so this means this vehicle must still compete on price, base to base.
 

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Now that the 2011 hurricane season has begun, the hybrid truck with local AC generation will be the next big market item for the Atlantic, Caribbean, and Gulf coasts. I do hope that all truck manufacturers produce such a vehicle, including GM, Ford, and Dodge.

Raymond
 
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