RAM has announced the European launch of its 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine with eTorque mild-hybrid system, which will be available for the RAM 1500 pickup truck. The eTorque system is a belt-driven motor generator that replaces the traditional alternator and provides up to 90 lb-ft of torque boost to the engine at low speeds. It also enables a seamless start-stop function, regenerative braking, and extended fuel shut-off to improve fuel efficiency and performance.
The eTorque system is part of RAM's strategy to offer more electrified options for its customers, following the introduction of the 4xe plug-in hybrid versions of the Jeep Wrangler and Jeep Renegade earlier this year. The eTorque system is already available in the U.S. market for both the V-6 and V-8 engines of the RAM 1500, but this is the first time it will be offered in Europe, where diesel engines are more prevalent.
How eTorque Works
The eTorque system consists of a 48-volt battery pack, a belt-driven motor generator unit, and a power inverter module. The battery pack is located behind the rear seat of the RAM 1500 and has a capacity of 0.43 kWh. The motor generator unit is mounted on the front of the engine and replaces the conventional alternator. It can provide up to 12 kW of electrical power to the battery pack or up to 90 lb-ft of torque assist to the engine via a belt drive.
The eTorque system works in conjunction with the engine's variable valve timing and two-step variable valve lift technologies to optimize performance and efficiency. The system can also support various functions, such as:
- Start-stop: The eTorque system can smoothly restart the engine in about half a second after it shuts off when the vehicle comes to a stop. This reduces fuel consumption and emissions while improving driver comfort.
- Regenerative braking: The eTorque system can capture some of the energy lost during braking and store it in the battery pack for later use. This reduces the load on the engine and improves fuel economy.
- Extended fuel shut-off: The eTorque system can extend the duration of fuel shut-off during coasting or deceleration, allowing the engine to run on electric power only for short periods. This also reduces fuel consumption and emissions.
- Torque assist: The eTorque system can provide a torque boost to the engine at low speeds or during acceleration, improving responsiveness and performance.
How eTorque Benefits Drivers
The eTorque system offers several benefits for drivers of the RAM 1500, such as:
- Improved fuel efficiency: The eTorque system can improve fuel economy by up to 10 percent compared to a conventional engine, according to RAM. The official EPA ratings for the U.S. market are 20 mpg city, 25 mpg highway, and 22 mpg combined for the V-6 engine with eTorque and rear-wheel drive, and 19 mpg city, 24 mpg highway, and 21 mpg combined for the V-6 engine with eTorque and four-wheel drive.
- Improved performance: The eTorque system can enhance performance by providing more torque at low speeds or during acceleration, improving responsiveness and drivability. The V-6 engine with eTorque can produce 305 horsepower and 269 lb-ft of torque and can tow up to 7,730 pounds (3,506 kg) when properly equipped.
- Improved comfort: The eTorque system can reduce noise, vibration, and harshness by enabling a smoother start-stop function and extended fuel shut-off. It can also improve ride quality by providing more precise control over the engine's speed and torque.