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PHOTO CAPTION: Fiat 500 will be offered with electric drive option in 2012

Chrysler Developing Both Electric and Hydraulic Hybrids

First electric car will be Fiat 500 slated to go on sale in 2012.

Published: 21-Jan-2011

Chrysler Group LLC announced Wednesday that it is testing a hydraulic hybrid system in a minivan as part of a partnership with the Environmental Protection Agency.

The system is one of many alternative powertrains under development by the Auburn Hills automaker as it strives to produce alternative vehicles and catch up with its competitors.

News of the EPA partnership came a day after Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne confirmed the company's plans to produce full-size hybrid sedans and minivans starting in the 2013 model year. Chrysler's first electric car is being developed with partner Fiat SpA; it will be a Fiat 500 and goes on sale next year. The company also is working on natural gas vehicles and will lead the field in offering 8- and 9-speed transmissions, designed for use with hybrids, in a wide range of vehicles.

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