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While General Motors and Ford drag their feet, Chrysler says "YES" to turbodiesels in half-ton trucks

It looks as though diesel mania is finally starting to catch on in the United States. Chrysler has confirmed that it will be offering a V6 turbodiesel in its Ram 1500 "consumer grade" pickup during the third quarter of 2013 according to USA Today.
The Big Three (Chrysler, Ford, GM) have long offered turbodiesel engines in their heavy-duty pickups, but have been reluctant to offer diesel power in their half-ton trucks due to concerns that Americans wouldn't pony up the money for a more fuel efficient engine (the 6.7 liter Cummins turbodiesel option on heavy-duty Ram pickups is a $7,795 option).
Auto enthusiasts have been craving a diesel engine in half-ton pickups for years, but the manufacturers have constantly pushed back. Chrysler, however, is finally listening to its customers.  "Customers have been emphatically asking for this, thirsting for it, craving it," said Fred Diaz, CEO of Chrysler's Ram division, citing internal studies.

Ram 1500
Unlike the diesel engine offered in heavy-duty versions of the Ram, Cummins won’t make this engine. Italian company VM Motori will instead manufacture the 3-liter V6 turbodiesel. The same engine will be available in the 2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee and produces 240hp and 420 lb-ft of torque in that application.
For comparison, the 5.7-liter V8 Hemi available in the Ram 1500 produces 360hp and 390 lb-ft of torque. Ford's 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6, which is billed as a fuel-efficient and powerful option for the F-150, is rated at 365hp and 420 lb-ft of torque. However, it wouldn't be a stretch to state that the Ram 1500 turbodiesel should have no problem outclassing the EcoBoost in EPA and real world fuel economy.
Chrysler is currently staying mum on pricing/fuel economy for the turbo diesel engine option, but expects the company to court an additional 10,000 in the first year of availability with continued growth in the coming years.

Updated 2/14/2013 @ 2:32pm EST
Chrysler has made an offiical announement on the light-duty turbodiesel.

Sources: USA Today, Chrysler

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VM motor seems solid
By 225commander on 2/14/2013 12:13:40 PM , Rating: 3
I can chime in on this topic, having recently purchased a Jeep Liberty CRD. They were only made for years '05 & '06, discontinued due to ULSDiesel fuel guidelines adopted in US for '07, this same motor also shows up in the '08-'10 Cherokee I think. It is a 2.8L i4 turbo diesel, producing 290ftlbs (limited to 240ftlbs in lockup) and 160HP. The thing has a tow rating of 5,000lbs! and will do 25-27mpg unladen on the highway at 70mph, impressive for sure. Word is the VM engine is 'rated' for 1million miles service life(the base motor itself), although the Jeep Liberty wrapped around it will never come close, haha. Very capable little rig though, I just towed a F250 Entergy work truck with steel work box 60 miles on a tow dolly and I very well bet its a bit more than the rated 5,000lbs :)
Im guessing this V6 will be more than adequate and put down soe impressive mpg numbers, with appropriate, um uh, 'off road only' tuning to 'unleash the beast' from EPA mandated restrictions.

RE: VM motor seems solid
By Jeffk464 on 2/14/2013 4:24:42 PM , Rating: 3
That engine in the new grand Cherokee would be very tempting.

RE: VM motor seems solid
By Jeffk464 on 2/14/2013 4:25:46 PM , Rating: 2
I love the new cherokee, but don't love the idea of getting 15mpg.

RE: VM motor seems solid
By Lord 666 on 2/14/2013 6:22:59 PM , Rating: 2
The 2008-2010 Cherokee CDI is a MB 3.0 power plant.

"Well, there may be a reason why they call them 'Mac' trucks! Windows machines will not be trucks." -- Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer

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