Last fall when Chrysler first showed the Dodge Avenger concept at the Paris Motor Show it had a diesel engine it. At the Detroit Auto Show, the Jeep Trailhawk concept had a Mercedes BlueTec diesel V-6 and now Grand Cherokee is available in production with the same engine. Chrysler has also indicated plans to use Mercedes diesel engines in a variety of other vehicles, including the minivans, in the coming years.

If Daimler does end up divesting itself of Chrysler in the near future, what will become of these plans? Hopefully, Mercedes will allow Chrysler to continue using their engines even in programs that haven't launched yet. Diesels offer an excellent way to dramatically increase fuel economy, and now that ultra low sulfur diesel fuel and new clean diesel emissions technology are available, oil burners have the opportunity to make some big gains.

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