AUBURN HILLS, MI
— As part of a deal to develop gasoline-electric powertrains with General Motors, Dodge will add a hybrid version of the Durango SUV in 2007, according to Automotive News
on December 13.The 2007 Durango hybrid will use technology developed jointly with GM. GM and DaimlerChrysler have signed a memorandum of agreement to collaborate on gasoline-electric hybrid powertrains. GM will provide the controller technology, with each company adapting the hybrid system to its own transmissions. GM has two mild hybrid pickups in production, but has only committed to build 2,500 units of the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra in 2005. DaimlerChrysler built 100 diesel-electric Dodge Ram pickups for fleet use; none were offered to consumers. Eric Ridenour, Chrysler´s group executive vice president of product development, would not give volume projections for the Durango hybrid, but it is one of the company´s vehicles that could benefit most from the fuel saving technology. The current Durango, with its 5.7L V-8 engine gets 14 mpg in city driving.