Ram To Begin Testing Plug-In Hybrid Pickups

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We knew it would happen sooner or later. According to a Chrysler press release, Yuma, Arizona has become the first U.S. city to receive a fleet of Ram pickups that are equipped with plug-in hybrid electric systems. All told, 12 cities across the country will be participating in a $100 million demonstration program that's sponsored by Chrysler and the U.S. Department of Energy.

Yuma will be receiving 10 trucks with each one equipped with the 5.7-liter Hemi V8 along with a liquid-cooled 12.9-kWh battery pack that's located beneath the second row bench. It's linked to a two-mode transmission that's "based upon two-speed transmission technology" from a previous EV project, which we're guessing is the previous generation Dodge Durango/Chrysler Aspen hybrids. Regenerative brakes and cylinder deactivation are also included along with a 240-volt/30-amp four-prong power outlet and a 120-volt/20-amp outlet power strip in the bed.

The idea is for drivers to be able to charge things such as cell phones and power tools back there. As of now, this program is entirely experimental with no plans for production (yet).

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