Chrysler has apparently been watching the lukewarm sales of the Chevy Tahoe and GMC Yukon hybrids and taken the lesson to heart. When the GM hybrids debuted earlier this year they were priced from $49,590 for the 2wd Tahoe to $52,885 (plus delivery charge) for the 4wd Yukon. The 1,100 or so sales through April was a sure sign that the market was apparently not ready to pay that kind of change for a full-size hybrid SUV. GM is now offering $4,000 cash rebates on those same hybrids while other manufacturers can't build hybrids fast enough.
Chrysler is going more aggressive with the pricing of their first hybrids. The Durango and Aspen will be available with four wheel drive only and start at a somewhat less stratospheric $45,340 and $45,570 respectively, including destination. Chrysler is conducting media drives this week and we'll be heading out to sample the production version. At this point we don't know how the equipment compares on the Chrysler and GM vehicles at their respective price points. GM definitely spent some extra cash on their vehicles to achieve weight reductions to keep the trucks in the same EPA test class. The last time I checked with Chrysler, they had not done this. The Chryslers are expected to be be rated at the same 20mpg highway as the four wheel drive GM trucks, a 40 percent bump over the conventional models. The Chrysler hybrids will also be eligible for an $1,800 federal tax credit as well. We'll just have to wait and see if a lower price tag can entice people to try opt for an SUV that still only gets 20mpg.
Chrysler LLC Prices New Hybrids Thousands Below Competition
Pricing Announced for 2009 Chrysler Aspen and Dodge Durango HEMI® Hybrids
* Chrysler and Dodge SUVs boast 40 percent fuel economy improvement in city
* 25 percent overall fuel economy improvement
* Customers to save hundreds of gallons of gas per year
* Full-size SUVs deliver rare blend of fuel economy, utility, capability and performance
* 2009 Dodge Durango HEMI Hybrid starts at $45,340
* 2009 Chrysler Aspen HEMI Hybrid starts at $45,570
* Customers to receive estimated tax credit of $1,800
Auburn Hills, Mich., Jun 17, 2008 - As Chrysler LLC goes green, customers will save some "green."
Chrysler announced today that it is pricing its full-size 4x4 sport-utility vehicle (SUV) hybrid electric vehicles nearly $8,000 below the competition.
The manufacturer's suggested retail price (MSRP) for the new 2009 Dodge Durango HEMI® Hybrid is $45,340, including $800 for destination. The MSRP for the new 2009 Chrysler Aspen HEMI Hybrid is $45,570, including $800 for destination. Additionally, customers are expected to receive an estimated tax credit of $1,800.
"The new 2009 Chrysler Aspen Hybrid and Dodge Durango Hybrid deliver fuel economy up to 20 miles per gallon-a 40 percent improvement in the city and 25 percent overall-best-in-class cargo room, and are priced nearly $8,000 below the competition," said Deborah Meyer, Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer – Chrysler LLC. "Offering the unique combination of value, fuel economy, performance and capability, Chrysler's hybrid vehicles deliver exactly what SUV owners are demanding in today's marketplace."
The 2009 Chrysler Aspen and Dodge Durango HEMI Hybrid vehicles are Chrysler's first entries in the hybrid market.
Capable of towing 6,000 lbs., the 2009 Chrysler Aspen and Dodge Durango HEMI Hybrid vehicles deliver seamless, dependable power and performance on demand, in an efficient package. With an electrically variable transmission-featuring the best characteristics of an automatic transmission and hybrid drive-and two different hybrid modes of operation, the drive system dramatically improves fuel economy around town and at highway speeds.
The 2009 Chrysler Aspen HEMI Hybrid and Dodge Durango HEMI Hybrid are coupled with Chrysler's renowned 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 engine. Total output, when combined with the advanced two-mode hybrid system, is 385 horsepower and 380 lb.-ft. of torque. In hybrid form, the HEMI continues to feature Chrysler's fuel-saving MDS technology, which allows the engine to seamlessly alternate between four-cylinder mode when less power is needed and V-8 mode when more power is in demand. The two-mode system provides assistance from electric motors, allowing the HEMI V-8 to remain in four-cylinder mode more often than without a hybrid powertrain, improving overall fuel economy.
The result: In typical use, Chrysler expects customers will reduce fuel consumption by several hundred gallons of gas per year.
Built at the Newark Assembly Plant in Delaware, the new 2009 Chrysler Aspen HEMI Hybrid and Dodge Durango HEMI Hybrid vehicles arrive in showrooms this August.
2009 Chrysler Aspen HEMI Hybrid
Chrysler Aspen is a premium SUV that offers elegant styling, premium amenities and innovative engineering with the room and capability of a sport-utility vehicle. Bigger than its full-size SUV competitors, yet smaller than large SUV competitors, Chrysler Aspen offers unique benefits as a luxury SUV in a class all its own.
Chrysler Aspen exudes styling elegance with clean, angular front and rear fenders, rear doors and rear-quarter panels creating a seamless profile. Individual chromed "Chrysler" lettering adorns the bodyside on each of the front doors. Premium touches also include chromed accents on body-side moldings, door handles and side mirrors, as well as 18-inch chrome-clad aluminum wheels. Chrysler Aspen's broad, chromed grille is crowned by a sculpted hood, a signature of Chrysler vehicles.
Standard interior appointments include wood-accented door panels and instrument-panel center stack, air conditioning, overhead console with HomeLink® Universal Transceiver and Electronic Vehicle Information Center, front and rear LED lamps that may be individually aimed, uconnect gps, floor console with rear power accessory outlet, and a 60/40 third-row bench seat.
Standard equipment also includes premium leather-trimmed bucket seats, eight-way power driver's seat with memory, four-way power passenger seat, heated front-row seats, and a second-row bench seat, providing seating for eight.
Chrysler Aspen rides on a torsionally stiff, hydroformed frame with an independent torsion-bar front suspension setup featuring rack-and-pinion steering that helps provide a smooth and quiet ride and precise handling. An isolated torsion bar crossmember helps minimize road noise. Suspension and steering are tuned to deliver optimum comfort and driveability.
In the rear is a unique suspension setup with coil springs and a solid rear axle that delivers durability and strength. A Watt's linkage system is fitted to the rear axle, centering the axle and reducing rear-end skate over rough surfaces.
Standard safety features include Chrysler's exclusive Trailer Sway Control, Electronic Stability Program, Anti-lock Brake System and next-generation front air bags, ParkSense® Rear Park Assist System, ParkView™ Rear Back-up Camera System, Tire Pressure Monitoring System and three-row side-curtain air bags with roll sensing.
2009 Dodge Durango HEMI Hybrid
Dodge Durango offers style, comfort, convenience and superior versatility in a real SUV, with three rows of seating and room for eight.
The Dodge Durango's styling is enhanced with a high beltline emphasizing its bold appearance, while short front and rear overhangs contribute to the vehicle's expression of concentrated power. Crisp angles and chiseled surfaces highlight a strong and confident front-end design. Dodge Durango's signature crosshair grille stands out prominently, flanked by rectangular headlamps with dual-halogen bulbs wrapped around the corners of the fenders. The rear design of the Dodge Durango is marked by "afterburner" taillamps, and a chromed appliqué accentuating the rear liftgate.
Standard interior appointments include premium two-tone door panels and satin silver finish instrument-panel center stack, air conditioning, overhead console with HomeLink® Universal Transceiver and Electronic Vehicle Information Center, front and rear LED lamps that may be individually aimed, uconnect gps, and a floor console with rear power accessory outlet.
Standard equipment also includes premium leather-trimmed bucket seats, eight-way power driver's seat with memory, four-way power passenger seat, heated front-row seats, a second-row bench seat and a 60/40 third-row bench seat, providing seating for eight.
Dodge Durango rides on a torsionally stiff, fully hydroformed frame with an independent front suspension and rack-and-pinion steering, providing a turning radius of 37.5 ft.-shorter than a Honda Pilot. Suspension and steering are finely tuned to deliver superior ride and precise steering. Dodge Durango's rear suspension features coil springs and a solid rear axle secured with a Watt's linkage system, resulting in refined ride and handling characteristics.
Advanced safety and security features include standard Anti-lock Brake System (ABS), Electronic Stability Program with Electronic Roll Mitigation and Trailer Sway Control, side-curtain air bags for all three rows, ParkSense® Rear Park Assist System, Tire Pressure Monitoring system, Sentry Key® engine immobilizer, and ParkView™ Rear Back-up Camera System.