Yesterday brought news from Chrysler-Fiat's CEO that the company's new extended range Town & Country would be arriving in the US "a year earlier" than expected - reportedly now arriving in late in 2015.
Although we are confident this van will indeed see production, we still have our doubts Fiatsler will be delivering any retail copies by the end of next year.
After all they do have a somewhat spotty history with the platform:
- April 2012 - a $10 million DoE grant help produced 23 electric Town & Country vans (with a 12.1 kWh battery on board) on a two year test program - which were recalled in September of 2012 because of some fires in 3 Dodge Ram EV trucks also included in the program
- September 2008 - Chrysler announced a 40 mile extended range van through its "ENVI" program. Unfortunately when Fiat took over the company in November 2009, they ended the program - scrapping 5 production-intent EV offerings at the same time
This reflection of vans-not-to-be caused us to think back even further; what about the other Chrysler EV vans in the past?
If The Battery Light Enters The Red A Continuous Chime Will Make You Want To End Your Life
Such as the Chrysler TEVan, which became the Chrysler EPIC, billed at the time to be "the world's only 5 passenger production electric minivan!" Range? "Good for 80 to 90 miles"
What ever happened to that program?
Total production run of the original TEVan was just 56 units, but from 1993 to 2001 Chrysler did manage to make a few hundred of the EPICs. The EPIC BEV was a fleet-lease only, but some were ultimately sold. Those that were leased were eventually crushed, although a dozen or so that were purchased still survive today.
Thankfully, the Chrysler walk-through "user's guide" on the EPIC is still around for our us relieve old memories - like the small and unintrusive EVSE charging system that came with the van.
Hat tip to offib!