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Dodge diesel delayedJanuary 12th, 2009 by Bill Cawthon

Dodge Ram 1500 pickup buyers will have to wait at least another year to have a diesel option. The new light-duty Cummins engine scheduled for introduction in 2010 has been pushed back to 2011 at the earliest.

Frank Klegon, Chrysler’s VP of product development said the company is re-evaluating its approach to diesel emissions because of tougher federal regulations that mandate a 90 percent reduction in nitrogen oxide emissions by 2010. To meet the requirements, the company must go with with either a catalytic converter or a urea system.

The delay probably won’t have a serious impact on sales unless there is another run-up in gasoline prices like the one that hit the U.S. in late spring and summer last year. Current diesel demand for light-duty trucks is not strong at this time and both Ford and Toyota have put their plans for such engines on hold.

At this time, the 6.7-liter, 6-cylinder diesel offered in Dodge’s heavy-duty Ram trucks is the only one that meets 2010 emissions standards.

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