Monday, June 25, 2007

More Mopar Diesels?

Chrysler's looking for new applications for the 3.0 CRD motor.

Chrysler seeks new applications for diesel engines


AutoWeek | Published 06/21/07, 2:39 pm et
CHELSEA, Mich. -- The Chrysler group is looking for new applications for the 3.0-liter six-cylinder diesel engine developed by Mercedes-Benz, its top product development executive says.

Speaking at a press event here, Frank Klegon, executive vice president for product development, did not specify what those new applications might be. Chrysler now uses the diesel only on the 2008 Jeep Grand Cherokee.

The automaker also wants to add a four-cylinder diesel to its North American product offerings, Klegon said.

Chrysler already offers four-cylinder diesels in Europe on the Grand Voyager minivan, Dodge Caliber hatchback and several Jeep models. The minivan is powered by a four-cylinder VM Motori diesel made in Italy. Chrysler buys a diesel engine from Volkswagen for the Caliber.

In the past, Chrysler looked to Mercedes first for diesel power. But it might broaden its list of suppliers under the pending ownership of Cerberus Capital Management LP, Klegon said.

He thinks that demand for diesels will account for 10 to 15 percent of North American light vehicles in the next 10 to 15 years and that demand for hybrids will rise to a similar level.

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