One of its crucial parts will be sourced locally from Toledo, Ohio
Jeep confirmed plans to produce a Wrangler PHEV (plug-in hybrid electric vehicle) last year and announced today that the 54-year-old Toledo Machining Plant in Ohio will produce the plug-in’s Power Electronic module, install the applicable software, and conduct final testing before the units are shipped off to the Toledo Assembly Plant, where the Wrangler plug-in will be built.
The Power Electronics module is comprised of the Power Inverter module and the Integrated Dual Charger module, which includes both an onboard charger and a DC/DC converter. Jeep will mount the module in a protective structure under the SUV between the exhaust and drive shaft.
Like with most plug-in vehicles, the electric motor (or motors) will provide additional power, improve fuel economy, and should offer a short all-electric driving range. Jeep has yet to announce what gas engine will be utilized in the hybrid system, but it could be a 3.6-liter V-6 like the one used in the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid.
Currently, the Wrangler’s optional 2.0-liter turbo-four uses the automaker’s eTorque mild-hybrid system and delivers an EPA-rated 22/24 mpg (10.7/9.8 L/100km) city/highway in the four-door Unlimited model, and 23/25 mpg (10.2/9.4 L/100km) in the two-door. That’s a nice improvement over the 3.6-liter V-6 and eight-speed automatic combo that delivers 18/23 mpg (13.1/10.2 L/100km) for both models.
The Wrangler plug-in is expected to launch in 2020 and is part of FCA’s commitment to have 30 models with electrified powertrains by 2022. The Pacifica Hybrid is currently FCA’s only plug-in vehicle and is rated at 32/33 mpg (7.3/7.1 L/100km) with a 33-mile (53-km) all-electric driving range.
Off-roading quietly on all-electric power probably doesn’t sound very enticing to your average Jeep customer, but the extra power and fuel economy that the hybrid powertrain affords could expand the SUV’s appeal.