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Chrysler Town & Country Minivan Takes Steps Toward Plug-In Hybrid Model

Chrysler’s plug-in hybrid-electric minivans are ready for the real world after final real-world testing and development stages.


Columbus, MS -- (SBWIRE) -- 05/04/2012 -- A plug-in hybrid-electric vehicle (PHEV) is essentially a regular hybrid with an extension cord. These vehicles are able to fill up on gas as well as be plugged in to any 120-volt outlet. Chrysler’s PHEV Town & Country minivan will be the first of its kind to hit the market after all testing and development stages.

The PHEV Chrysler Town & Country minivans will be evaluated on real-world performance; meaning that each one will be subjected to “temperature extremes and variations of drive cycles,” said Abdullah Bazzi, senior manager of Chrysler Group’s advanced hybrid vehicle project. The data collected will help Chrysler get a better idea on customer acceptance of the technologyand its impact on the grid.

Customer acceptance should be high, considering PHEVs are cheaper to run and cheaper to maintain. People routinely pay more for such options as sunroofs, automatic transmissions, V8 engines and leather seats. These are "features" -- and no one asks about the payback. A JD Power survey shows buyers will pay more for cars with the "environmental feature."

Using the average U.S. electricity rate of 9 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh), 30 miles of electric driving will cost 81 cents. If we optimistically assume the average US fuel economy is 25 miles per gallon, at $3.00 gasoline this equates to 75 cents a gallon for equivalent electricity.

A total of 25 PHEV Town & Country minivans are now in service, spread throughout Arizona, North Carolina, and Michigan. Each front-drive minivan is powered by a 3.6-liter Pentastar engine that’s paired with a two-mode hybrid transmission that also works in combination with a liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery to crank out 290 hp. Range is said to be 700 miles, and the minivans can be charged in as little as two to four hours with a 220-volt Level 2 charge cord or eight to 15 hours with a 110-volt Level 1 charge cord.

Hopefully the Chrysler PHEV will be seen in showrooms by 2014 due to the final stages of testing being held currently. In the meantime, also give the 2012 Chrysler Town & Country a shot, with a 2011 IIHS winner and upgraded standard features, this minivan has been rated above all others in its class.

Carl Hogan Automotive, a Columbus area Chrysler dealership, provides a full line of Chrysler minivans and new family-size sedans and SUVs. Browse their selection online at for the best deals and incentives.

About Carl Hogan Automotive
Carl Hogan Automotive is proud to be a leading Chrysler, Dodge, Ram and Jeep Dealer in the Columbus, MS area. Located in Eastern Mississippi, Carl Hogan offers the best vehicles to all surrounding areas including West Point, Aberdeen, Columbus, and Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Carl Hogan Automotive also provides a state-of-the-art service center and an extremely qualified and personal experience every time. That is why people from all over Mississippi and Alabama come to Carl Hogan Automotive in Columbus, MS for their Chrysler, Dodge, Ram and Jeep vehicles.