In a speech at the National Biodiesel Board Annual Conference today, Deb Morrissett, Vice President of Regulatory Affairs for the Chrysler Group, encouraged the biodiesel industry to continue their development of a national standard for B20 as automobile manufacturers focus more resources on producing diesel vehicles capable of running on the fuel.
“To speed the adoption of biodiesel, and to help harness and direct the diverse research and investment efforts going into its development, we need to expedite setting a national fuel specification for biodiesel, just as we have for other fuels,” said Morrissett. “I’m looking forward to the time when anyone can fuel up with B20, but we’re not there yet.”
Morrissett also promised that more vehicles capable of running on the renewable fuel are on the horizon: “I want to encourage you to stay tuned — because, drawing on the diesel expertise of DaimlerChrysler and partners like Cummins, we intend to keep building our diesel leadership in the years to come.”
Last month, DaimlerChrysler AG’s Chairman Dieter Zetsche introduced the 2007 Dodge Ram 2500 and 3500 with 6.7-liter Cummins turbodiesel engine offered with B5 and B20 biodiesel, available to consumers in March. The first to do so and three years before the deadline, the heavy duty truck will meet stringent 2010 truck emissions standards in all 50 states. He also announced the Dodge Ram clean, light-duty turbodiesel engine, that will provide up to 30-percent improved fuel economy and meet 50-state 2010 emissions standards, will be available after 2009.
In addition to leadership in the development of clean diesel technologies, DaimlerChrysler is a global leader among automakers in using and promoting renewable fuel sources. Approximately 15,000 Jeep(R) Liberty CRD diesels were delivered to customers running on B5. In 2007, Dodge Ram diesel pickups and the Jeep Grand Cherokee CRD with 3.0-liter, common rail, turbo-diesel engine, will also be fueled with B5 at the factory. These vehicles are approved for regular use with B5 biodiesel fuel, and the 2007 Dodge Ram is approved for use of B20 for commercial, government and military fleets which use military specification biodiesel fuel.
In addition to Morrissett’s remarks, Loren Beard, Manager of Fuel Legislation, Regulation and Policy and Scott Schramm, Manager of Regulatory and Technical Affairs also addressed the group regarding engine warranty issues, the OEM experience with alternative fuels and navigating new regulations.
Advanced diesel technology is part of the Chrysler Group’s advanced propulsion technology umbrella, which also includes efficient gasoline engines, hybrids, flex-fuel vehicles, electric vehicles and a test fleet of more than 100 fuel cell-powered vehicles.
In 2007, DaimlerChrysler will produce more than 250,000 flexible-fuel vehicles (FFVs) capable of running on E85 fuel, conventional gasoline or any combination of the two fuels. The company’s FFV fleet will increase to nearly 500,000 in 2008. The 2007 FFV lineup includes:
* Jeep Grand Cherokee, Jeep Commander, Dodge Durango and Chrysler Aspen
SUVs (4.7-liter engine)
* Dodge Ram and Dodge Dakota pickups (4.7-liter engine)
* Chrysler Sebring sedan (2.7-liter engine)
* Dodge Caravan, Dodge Grand Caravan and Chrysler Town & Country minivans