Chrysler has also unveiled their plans for Dodge, which include the release of three new models, and the possible resurrection of the Durango.
Dodge has not been left out of Chrysler's plan for the future. Chrysler will try to bring out three new Dodge units over the next two years, including the resurrection of the Dodge Durango.
First up will be the release of a brand new 2010 Dodge Charger. This does not come as much of a surprise, since the Charger and Chrysler 300 share the same platform. Chrysler CEO Bob Nardelli had previously announced those new vehicles back in October.
A new Dodge Durango is also coming down the pipeline. This is a huge surprise from the company, since the Durango was believed to be dead-in-the-water when Chrysler announced it was closing the Newark Assembly facility in Delaware where the SUV is built. New Durango purchasers are buying a SUV built on the platform used for the Dodge Ram pickup truck. Its current generation was launched in 2004, with a facelift taking place in 2007. The new Durango will have a unibody structure seen more often on cars, not trucks and SUVs. It will not be built on the Ram platform.
Chrysler has not said where the new Dodge Durango will be assembled. The company's wording in their restructure plan also suggests the Durango name will be abandoned.
Finally, Chrysler is readying a two-mode hybrid model of the Dodge Ram. This comes as no surprise; Chrysler issued a press release at the 2008 NAIAS indicating the truck was destined to get hybrid technology. The hybrid system was co-designed by GM, Daimler, Chrysler, and BMW over the last several years. It is a full-hybrid system, able to operate on pure electric power at low speeds, with a near instant engine restart taking place when the vehicle needs more power.
Already we have seen the Big Three automotive conglomerate's plans for a new Chrysler 300C, Jeep Grand Cherokee, and an extensive partnership with Fiat. Also, Chrysler has talked about the release of their new Phoenix V6 engine, a more fuel efficient model when compared to similar units. Chrysler was required to present the updated plan to the U.S. government as part of the bailout loan agreement.
Chrysler has already taken $4 billion in bailout loans. They have requested an additional $5 billion from the U.S. government.