Additional Details On The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Plug-In Hybrid

FEB 3 2016 BY MARK KANE 52

Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid (InsideEVs/Tom Moloughney)

Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid (InsideEVs/Tom Moloughney)

Chrysler unveiled at NAIAS its first series-production plug-in hybrid Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid (see photos and videos).

We don’t exactly understand why Chrysler named it hybrid instead of plug-in hybrid, but it will have a decent all-electric range of 30 miles and sales are to begin in the second half of this year.

Green Car Reports recently interviewed Mike Duhaime, Chrysler’s global director for electrification, to get some more details on the Pacifica Hybrid.

Chrysler’s study indicates that the average round-trip commute for this type of vehicle stands at 29 miles – and this is why they developed car with 30 miles all-electric range (and probably even more likely a reason was to secure the full $7,500 federal tax credit for the 16 kWh battery too).

Electric mode is apparently good enough to work over the full speed range, at least until someone depresses the pedal to the metal.

Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid 7 or 8 Seat Options

Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid 7 or 8 Seat Options

The battery pack compromises the 2nd row “Stow ‘N’ Go” folding seats, but otherwise the plug-in hybrid is mostly the same as the conventional model.

“That’s also a size that fits neatly into the Stow ‘n’ Go second-row seating tubs for the vehicle. In the Hybrid, the seats no longer fold into the floor, but all the rest of the van’s cargo versatility is intact.”

A very interesting part of the discussion was on the drivetrain, which wasn’t presented in detail at NAIAS. There is a large 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 engine borrowed from the conventional model, but tuned for a different application for the plug-in hybrid – the large size makes it easier to be flexible and quieter (this is why GM increased the size of the 2016 Volt engine).

There are also two electric motors, a planetary gear and clutches that enables it to have various driving modes – from single electric motor, through two electric motors, ending with one electric motor and second electric motor engaged as a generator propelled by the engine.

Pacificia Hybrid trunk

Pacificia Hybrid trunk

The first electric motor is larger and both of them have different gear ratios to cover a broad range of speeds.

“Effectively, one motor is on the engine, and the other is at the wheels. In pure-electric mode, the Pacifica Hybrid performs like an electric car with a very large motor; and then when the battery depletes, one motor is used to start the engine and act as a generator.

“When it runs as a hybrid, when the engine’s running, we use Motor A to balance the engine and put it in its most optimum range, and in parallel with Motor B we get the ratio, and the torque to the wheels,” said Duhaime.

“Otherwise when it’s an electric vehicle we decouple it from the engine and both motors run as a pair, and we get all the performance from the electric motor system.”

Several thousand sold annually probably is the base sales target.

What we know up to date:

  • expected 30 miles of all-electric range and 80 MPGe fuel economy
  • all-electric mode capable of over 120 km/h (75 mph)
  • 16 kWh battery to qualify for $7,500 federal tax credit (liquid-cooled, consist pouch cells)
  • 2-hour charging capability
  • 3.6-liter Pentastart V6 with lowered output to 248hp with 230lb ft of torque, and two electric motors
  • seats for 8 (option)
  • sales launch in second half of 2016

Source: Green Car Reports

Categories: Chrysler

Tags: , , ,

Leave a Reply

52 Comments on "Additional Details On The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Plug-In Hybrid"

newest oldest most voted

Truth be told, this is what a “hybrid” should have been from the very beginning. The only reason to call it anything else is to distinguish it from the hybrids of the past.

Well, to be fair, when the first gas hybrids launched in late 90’s, Li-ion battery tech wasn’t really there, and I don’t know how much space the older battery techs would have required, together with the gas engine/tank and everything else.
Remember, the Prius has always been a 5-seater so it did need that space.

All true.

The point is that it wasn’t really a hybrid. It only ran on gasoline.

It was an advanced gas only vehicle which got great mileage.

You’re not using the term as intended. The energy storage method isn’t relevant at all. The question is what drives the wheels. Since the motor is capable of directly driving the wheels with the engine off (for about a mile on the 2nd-gen Prius my friend has), it is a hybrid vehicle.

So is a steamship that has sails, incidentally — both methods can directly cause the ship to move.

Yes, two energy inputs == hybrid.
Single energy input == something else.

Your gas car has a battery which starts the engine, capacitors which run the antilock brakes, vacuum for boosting normal brakes. All powered by gasoline.

They Prius is basically a fancy transmission.

Strange, dying to know the base price of this minivan. One thing for sure, they’re going to jack up the price by $7,500!

Although not interested in a mini van, let alone a Chrysler product, I am pleased to see options in larger vehicles. Our i3 is not much for family camping trips. Now if I can get my 4runner as a phev….

A camper conversion of the plug in pacifica would be pretty awesome. Pop top up for sleeping and replace the second row seats with some cabinets/sink and stove.

The original Pacifica was almost 5000 pounds, with a battery and motor it could weight a lot.

I wonder where they sourced the hybrid drivetrain and battery management system.

Electrovaya WAS working with Chrysler with development. I’m not sure if that is where it all will be sourced from at production.

“Several thousand sold annually probably is the base sales target.” To me this only makes sense if the price point is ridiculously high. I would compare this with the Mitsubishi plug in outlander. They can’t stock them fast enough in Europe and Asia because the price isn’t too far out of bed as compared to the standard version similarly equipped.

I could see this minivan bring in oddessey/sienna shoppers who wouldn’t have given Chrysler a second look. Similar to the Volt getting a lot of conquest sales from Prius owners. Personally this is the car I’m most excited about that I would reasonably spend my $$$ on.

Price and reliability are the real issues in my mind. My 09 town and country has been pretty reliable and as much as they call this a new vehicle it doesn’t look that far removed from my 09.

“Several thousand” may be the amount of battery cells secured.

FCA probably figured out how many Pacifica Hybrids they need to sell in order to meet their CARB-CAFE goals and ordered that many.

Chrysler averages around 10,000 Town & Country per month, so if they can just get 1 out of 10 of those buyers to get a Pacifica, that would be 12000 sales right there.

Of course the car has to be available (nationwide and stocked at dealers). That could be an issue.

This is the car my family has been waiting for, and I don’t think we’re unusual in our vehicle needs. I used to drive a 2012 Leaf (until the lease ended), and now a 2015 Volt, but those are too small to really work as family cars- not enough space for car seats, strollers, groceries, passengers, etc. An affordable plug-in minivan could appeal to a huge demographic underserved by current EVs. If it comes in at a reasonable price, they could sell way more than “several thousand.”

Yes, I have to say this is the van I’ve been waiting for as well. Great efficient family vehicle. A large amount of daily use could be just on electric with this van that has 30 miles electric range. Higher gas prices in the future will make this an attractive buy as a used van, with 4 digit savings per year on fuel when gasoline approaches $3 a gallon again.

Pricing is key here. Let’s say the Pacifica is $10k more than the gas powered van. As long as the buyer qualifies for the federal tax credit, that’s a net additional cost of only $2500. With the typical short trips of soccer mom driven minivans, you could easily save $500 a year or more in gas, so a 5 year or less payback. And that’s with gas in the $1.75 range, could be much better if gas shoots back up to $2.50 or $3.

I believe Price is the reason they brought the PHEV as Pacifica name not the Town and Country. The Town and Country price is $30k-$40k, I think the Pacifica line will start around $35k and the PHEV will hit $50k.

I am by no means a soccer mom and currently have no need for this vehicle but I love the technology and want it to expand. I think if the MSRP(pre incentive) is at or below $45k this could have the potential to sell 50,000 units, at $55k+ it will probably be 25,000 units.

The Dodge Caravan will only be fleet sales now.

The Pacifica starts at the same $30k.

The Pacifica Hybrid will have no base model.

Well equipped Touring Model and fully loaded Platinum Model.

My guess is $42k-$45k for Touring

And ~$50k for Platinum.

If it is only $10K more than a conventional ICE version, it is a complete no-brainer. People would literally be making a stupid decision not to get the PHEV version considering the fuel savings would cover the price difference in just 3 to 4 years.

as someone who leases at a significant discount, not sure Id be okay with paying 3k more for minuscule savings in the 2 years I have the car. Id rather stick to a touring model pacifica, keep the power I want and be able to go AWD here in michigan. The difference is well worth it, plus Im saving in insurance as the hybrid will be set to a higher premium, and not because its got a “higher price tag”. Its initial insurance score will make it so the monthly cost on insurance is higher.

I’ll save at least 3k on the total sale and about $50 a month in insurance.

My gas will likely be $50 more a month but the total savings bring me at $162.50 savings per month, compared to this PHEV. I’ll gladly take that savings and use it for something I can enjoy!

Clean air and filling up at home is enjoyable.

just a WAG here, but you’ve not driven an EV I’ll guess.
lack of AWD -will- be an issue for many, I’ll grant you, hope they change their mind about that.

A $7500 tax credit is not worth $7500 cash. You get back a percentage of that in the form of a tax return… but it wont be worth even close to that amount.

It is nice – but I would suspect the hybrid version will be closer to ~3K more than the standard version.


“Tax credits provide a dollar-for dollar reduction of your income tax liability. This means that a $1,000 tax credit saves you $1,000 in taxes.”

Unless you don’t pay any taxes. In which case you probably won’t be buying a $40,000 vehicle…

“A $7500 tax credit is not worth $7500 cash. You get back a percentage of that in the form of a tax return… but it wont be worth even close to that amount.”

You completely misunderstood the difference between $7500 tax deduction and tax credits…

John below is correct.

I got my $7500 back in full amount, dollar for dollar.

The only way you don’t get the full amount is if you don’t have “enough tax liability”. Again, that is different from tax deduction.

Tax deduction is against your income. Tax liability is the amount of tax that your AGI is subject to. You can owe $0 in tax but still get additional $7500 back if your AGI has enough tax liability. That is about $45K/year.

Of course, always consult your tax advisor… 🙂

This car is the real deal. It’s not Leaf that’s hardly selling or not selling without the incentives. It won’t be the Bolt at $37.5K which will only steal some Leaf or Volt customers but will not add any incremental customers into the picture. If Pacifica is priced reasonably, every soccer mom should be buying this thing.

Details actually sound good (well, except for it being a minivan. yuck)

But this is a straight compliance vehicle at the moment. Expect to see it in CARB states only for the foreseeable future.

And they are calling it a “hybrid” because FCA knows Joe the Plumber will immediately go “30 mile range plug-in minivan?! What a joke!” and won’t even consider buying it. By labeling it a hybrid, Joe Schmoe will instead think it’s a extra large Prius (with no range limitations).

And when I say Joe the Plumber, I probably should have said Sally the Soccermom.

Compliance vehicle? No!

This is a very nice entry to the plug-in market. A much-needed plug-in minivan.

“As for when the Pacifica Hybrid will reach dealerships, all we know is, “late 2016.” But Mets said that the minivan will at some point be available in all 50 states. Initial availability might be limited to places like California, but, “The idea is to sell it nationwide,” he said.

Sounds a lot like corporate talk for “Yes, it’s a compliance car, but of course we can’t call it that.”

Well if you go with that kind of definitely then EVERY EV is a ‘compliance car’. Including all the Teslas since they sell the ZEV credits to other car companies.

I define the ‘compliance cars’ as those half-hearted efforts that are only sold in small quantities in ZEV states intended only to meet the CARB ZEV requirements . . . cars like the Fiat 500e, Spark EV, Toyota Rav4 EV, Honda Fit EV, etc.

Honestly, there are pretty few compliance cars left as most companies now seem to have serious plug-in car efforts (i3, Volt, etc.) or at least they sell their quasi-compliance cars in other markets (Ford Focus EV, KIA Soul EV).

To me, cars sold in CARB states only are compliance cars. The Spark EV is a compliance car (though it was probably more of a test guinea pig for GM, but still fits the definition). The Fiat 500e is a compliance car, the Soul EV is a compliance car. Even the Gen 1 Toyota Prius Plug-in was a compliance car, despite being in the top 3 in EV sales for a couple of years, due to only being available in CARB states.

Until FCA says “Yes, the Pacifica hybrid is 100% going to be sold in all 50 states”, it is a compliance car to me. Having an “idea” or “plan” to sell in all 50 states is very different from a definitive statement saying they will, like GM has done with the Bolt EV.

Well I’m pretty sure it will be sold in all states. They would not spend so much money designing a plug-in hybrid minivan only to sell it in ZEV states . . . that is too much money. Especially since they have a decent selling Fiat 500e.

But it is understandable that they will start selling it as soon as possible in the ZEV states to get credits and then move on to other states. The LEAF and Volt did the same thing.

“To me, cars sold in CARB states only are compliance cars”

Spark Ev are sold in Canada, Mexico and South Korea.

I didn’t know those are “compliance” states. =)

There will be a JEEP version in Fall 2017 for the minivan haterz.

Where did you see that? Only thing I saw as far as an electric Jeep was 2022 or beyond.

He knows not what he sayeth.

Is this ENVI revival? Or just dreaming?

If so, please bring back the Circuit.

“and probably even more likely a reason was to secure the full $7,500 federal tax credit for the 16 kWh battery too”

And this is a good thing. This is something the stupid Ford Energi cars completely failed at. Why not make the battery a full 16KWH when the government is paying for it??!?!?

The 16KWH number looks like it will accidentally be a great number for PHEVs. 16KWH is easily charged up overnight with an ordinary outlet and it will generally cover more than 50% of daily driving.

Could you imagine if everyone switched to PHEVs? We could slash our private vehicle gasoline consumption in half.

Ford probably would have done that, but it would have then made their Energis too expensive (and make the Fusion go from tiny trunk to no trunk at all).

It is a joke that Ford can’t at least include a slightly larger battery in their Energis to get the range in the mid-20’s at least….they are the only manufacturer that has gone in REVERSE for EV range numbers (from 21 to 19 miles). LAME

Yeah, the problem with the Energi cars is that they are clunky conversions from ICE/hybrid models.

They days of conversion vehicles is coming to an end. It has become clear that if you want to build a good pure EV or even PHEV, you have to design it as a pure EV or PHEV from the ground up.

Well . . . I guess Europe will have a bunch of their lame small battery PHEVs due to their particular CO2 rules.

The reason for the engine was Chryslers laziness to develop an equally strong 4 cylinder turbo engine.

I know, someone will come and say, but it can run at lower revs, which is bullshit because a turbo 4 cylinder has more torque at lower revs, than this engine, so it should be way more efficient through less friction.

Riiight. Which is why Toyota used an Atkinson cycle 4 cylinder turbo in it’s Highlander Hybrid. Oh wait…

The single reason this be the volt went with larger displacement is acoustics.

Good to finally see a PHEV minivan, good that the electric range is not puny – and good that it’s committed to nationwide distribution rather than only compliance (not written in the post, but Jay said so in previous mentions).

Even better that it comes from Chrysler. The more serious players in the EV field, the better.

I could have used this ten years ago when we were in the prime minivan time in our family.

“We don’t exactly understand why Chrysler named it hybrid instead of plug-in hybrid, but it will have a decent all-electric range of 30 miles and sales are to begin in the second half of this year.”

Maybe there will be a “non plugin” version? Just like Ford’s hybrid and Energi models?

Why else would they need that huge engine onboard?

With all that said, this is still one of the most significant PEV launch as it is truly one of the “affordable” (assumption) people mover there is.

The last and biggest question is price that everyone are dying to find out.

Why bother with a non-plugin hybrid? Big 6 engines are cheap, relatively quiet and useful in offroaders and pickups. Would love this configuration in Jeep and Ram products.

Windsurfers will now have a plug-in that they can buy and use with their hobby.

Good, likely it will force GM to react. Volt is a bit too small for many. 16Kwh not bad. I would be satisfied with that.