YUMA, AZ - Chrysler Group LLC, working in partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), delivered three demonstration-fleet Chrysler Town & Country plug-in hybrid minivans to the City of Yuma, Ariz.

The plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs) will be subjected to the harshest conditions. Chrysler chose Yuma for its extreme high ambient temperature, sometimes exceeding 104 degrees during summer months.

Chrysler’s partnership with Yuma is one of several that will see a total of 25 plug-in hybrid minivans subjected to a range of driving cycles, according to Chrysler. The City will report real-world city and rural miles accumulated on demonstration vehicles over next two years. PHEVs will be used to evaluate city drive cycles, thermal and charging performance, fuel economy, and real-world performance.

Each plug-in hybrid minivans is equipped with an E-85-compatible 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine mated to a front-wheel-drive, two-mode hybrid transmission.

It also is powered by a liquid-cooled 12.1 KWhr lithium-ion battery that affords a total output of 290 hp and a range of 700 miles. Charge times are two to four hours at 220 volts with a Level 2 charge cord unit, and eight to 15 hours at 110 volts with a Level 1 charge unit.

A fleet of plug-in hybrid Ram pickups also is being evaluated as part of a wider project. Chrysler delivered the pickups to the City of Yuma, the cities of Sacramento and San Francisco in California, the City of Auburn Hills, Mich., and the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority.

The City of Auburn Hills is also testing four plug-in hybrid Chrysler Town & Country Minivans.