Some of the hottest new products from Chrysler Group are the Jeep Cherokee and the Chrysler 200. We like both vehicles, but were a little surprised to not see a diesel or hybrid option. To help fuel economy and emissions, Chrysler announced that they will offering Stop-Start technology on both vehicles.
Buyers of the Pentastar V6 Cherokee or the Tigershark I4 in the Chrysler 200 will have the feature as standard. Before you all freak out, both vehicles will have an override to disable the system.
Chrysler group is claiming a 3% increase in fuel economy by using the system. Though, if you sit frequently at red lights or in traffic, we anticipate those savings to be even greater. Start-Stop technology also reduces greenhouse gas emissions and should help reduce air quality issues in large cities as the technology becomes more widely available.
If you haven’t experienced the system, when approaching a stop the engine will turn off. While you are sitting with the foot on the brake, the electrical system stays active operating the radio, headlights, climate control, and more. As soon as you lift your foot off the brake, the engine restarts in approximately 300 milliseconds.
While we haven’t sampled the system in these vehicles yet, there are some questions we have. In warm climates when the air conditioning is running, what happens to the air temperature when the engine turns off? In full-hybrids, they use an electric air conditioning system. The key to making a system like this effective to design it in a way that the driver doesn’t feel compelled to disable it.
For the Cherokee, it will be available in the third quarter of this year. For the 200, it will be in the fourth quarter.
Chad Kirchner is a freelance automotive journalist with a sincere passion for the industry and helping people. He’s a member of the Midwest Automotive Media Association and the Texas Auto Writers Association. When not writing about the latest automotive news or vehicles, you can catch him at car shows around the country. Be sure to check him out on social media, including Google+ and Twitter.