Posted on November 22, 2018
What does Ram Etorque mean? | Toronto and Mississauga
It sounds environmentally friendly, but what exactly IS eTorque and why should you think about buying a Dodge Ram truck with this feature? Next to helping you choose a vehicle, we love demystifying new lingo for our customers in Oakville, Mississauga, Brampton and Toronto. Some of you may be up on every new auto tech development, but for those of you who aren’t, we’re always here to help. We’ve written about eTorque recently, but if you’re still not sure what it is, here’s more great information. Truck lovers—established and potential—this one’s for you.
What is eTorque?
In a nutshell, the eTorque system replaces the conventional alternator. For non-mechanics out there, the alternator is a generator of electric power in your car and is a major component of your vehicle's charging system. When your vehicle’s engine is running, the alternator charges your battery and supplies additional electric power for the vehicle's various electrical systems. Spinning wheels on your truck have terrific potential to generate power, even as you’re slowing down. The downside is, much of that braking energy is converted into heat, which is then wasted. Or it used to be, till regenerative braking systems came on the scene, converting waste to electricity. Voila: eTorque.
Until recently, regenerative braking systems were primarily reserved for cars, from mild hybrids to gasoline-electric hybrids to full-on electric vehicles. The introduction of the 2019 Ram 1500's eTorque
shows that regen systems are available on full-size pickups, and we’re excited about what that means for truck lovers in the GTA. The 2019 Ram
has already won an award from Green Car Journal, 2019 Green Truck of the Year. With a debut like that, Ram fans can’t help but be impressed.
We get it. There are a few diehards in the pickup segment who feel hesitant to embrace green technology, mainly because of perceptions about who drives such vehicles. Worries about hybrid trucks running out of juice at critical moments run a close second when it comes to consumer reluctance. But the Ram’s eTorque system definitely deserves a long look, because it’s not just good for the environment, it’s good for your wallet and the longevity of your beloved pickup. Stay with me, truck fans.
When you accelerate your Ram 1500 from a low speed, the truck’s regen capability acts as a motor that throws power at the engine's crankshaft. It’s a helping hand, which has benefits. When you ease off the throttle to coast, or touch down lightly on your brake pedal, the engine's slowing crankshaft reverses the eTorque system. It goes from being an electric motor assisting the engine to an effective generator spun by the engine. That captured energy is passed into a 430 watt-hour, air-cooled, lithium-ion battery pack, no bigger than a small suitcase. And it’s conveniently mounted inside the passenger cabin on the rear wall, right between seats and pickup bed.
The battery pack turns 48V juice into the typical 12V that charges the smaller lead-acid battery. It also powers up important engine accessories like your electric engine cooling fan. With the motor freed up from the task of running a cooling fan and alternator, more power travels to the wheels. The engine isn’t making more power, but your truck can make better use of the power it has. No complex math required: this is good for fuel economy overall, as we’ll see when we look at towing. But first, the system powers a now-conventional start-stop system. Your engine shuts off at traffic stops, and eTorque quickly restarts as soon as the gas pedal is pushed. This saves gas by lessening the overall time spent idling. For cold engine starts, a traditional starter motor driven by a 12V lead acid car battery kicks in with sweet efficiency.
How does eTorque affect Ram’s braking?
Ram eTorque has three different stages of braking regen. When you’re coasting, or when you need to apply just a little bit of brake, such as heading down a moderate slope, eTorque opts for pure regen. In other words, the truck’s conventional disc brakes are disabled. The friction of the generator capturing that previously-wasted braking energy is enough to slow the truck slightly.
For situations where you need to lay a heavier foot on the brake, Ram has something called blended regen, which allows the conventional disc brakes and regen to work together. The generator still gathers up the braking energy, but now the brakes themselves are helping out. In emergency situations that demand harder braking, regen is completely disabled and the traditional disc brakes take over to stop your truck.
What are the current eTorque engine options for Ram?
Ram 1500s with the 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 will come standard with eTorque, and it'll be available as an option on the 5.7L Hemi V8. The V6's eTorque generator is liquid-cooled and mounted on the front of the engine, while the V8's is air-cooled and mounted on the top of the engine. The design differences come down to packaging and making space for the necessary components in the engine bay. The eTorque system gives added boost to accelerations below 2,000 rpm and adds an additional 90 foot-pounds of torque on the V6 and 130 on the V8. It doesn’t increase power so much as it smooths out gaps in engines' torque bands at lower speeds. Not that power is lost. Worry not: According to one industry insider, the Ram 1500’s eTorque 0-60 mph times are pretty much identical to non-eTorque models.
How does eTorque impact the Ram’s towing?
Adding eTorque to the Hemi cranks your Ram’s towing capacity from 11,610 to 12,750 lbs. We recommend opting for the tallest 3.92 axle ratio and tow package. The regen technology also has a positive impact on fuel efficiency on the Hemi from 17 mph combined city/highway to 19 mph on two- and four-wheel-drive models. If you think about it, electrification makes even more good sense on bigger working trucks, mainly because electric motors excel at creating great torque from idle, which is ideal for towing and hauling heavy loads. We’ll wait and see if Ram moves this technology to the rest of its pickup line
, but for now, the Ram 1500 is grabbing rave reviews.
Where can I buy a Ram 1500 with eTorque in Mississauga?
has Ram 1500 inventory that can’t be beat. Book a test drive today and see what eTorque feels like behind the wheel.
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