For Sale By:Dealer
Disability Equipped: No
Sub Model: 4WD Crew Cab 149 Tradesman
Exterior Color: Other
Drivetrain: Four Wheel Drive
Kernersville, North Carolina, United States
One of the hottest topics in the industry these days is automakers' expanding use of aluminum, especially for vehicle bodies and platforms. While the lightweight metal has historically been the preserve of premium brands and sports cars, Ford shocked the industry when it announced that its 2015 F-150 would go aluminum-intensive for its new generation. As it turns out, the material change doesn't even mean a big jump in the prices for most of its trims. Possibly in reaction to the big change, General Motors is said to be using the lightweight metal in its next-gen trucks, too. That only leaves Ram as an open question among the domestics, and at least for now, the company is apparently in no hurry to push tin.
According to Reuters speaking with two, unnamed insiders, the Ram 1500 isn't getting an aluminum infusion until sometime after 2020. That's not to say the truck is going to be stagnant for the next half-decade or more, of course. According to Ram's five-year plan, there's a refresh for the 1500 coming in 2015 and much bigger changes on the way in 2017. Those same sources tell Reuters that further revisions aren't expected until at least 2021, which is when the aluminum could be added.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne hasn't minced words about his thoughts on using the lightweight metal in pickups. "I have better use of aluminum in this house than a pickup truck," he said in May. Having said that, Marchionne was clear that if the material turns out to be revolutionary in the segment, the company would be willing to follow.
One of the more curious developments at the Los Angeles Auto Show this week was the return of the Chevrolet Colorado pickup truck. General Motors ended production of the Colorado and its cousin, the GMC Canyon, early last year. At the time, the decision seemed to be the final curtain for small and midsize domestic pickups, as it followed Ford's decision to kill the Ranger and Chrysler's decision to end production of the Dodge Dakota.
Bigland argues the Ram 1500 EcoDiesel is essentially competing for the same buyers as the Colorado.
Does Chevy's revival of the Colorado mean a new dawn for the segment overall? Yes and no. The Colorado's reinvention essentially provides a peek at how automakers tackle the same problem in two different ways. GM's approach is to create a new midsize pickup. Chrysler's approach, on the other hand, would seem to focus more on the prospective buyer than the product itself.
SEMA is all about aftermarket parts, and in Auburn Hills that all comes down to one name: Mopar. After having previewed its lineup for this year's Vegas tuner expo earlier this month, Chrysler has now revealed what may not quite be its full dossier of modified show cars, but a good portion of them.
All told Mopar is preparing 20 vehicles for display at SEMA this year. Among them you'll find the Ram Sun Chaser, a 1500 Quad Cab show truck kitted out in two-tone orange and black paint, a roof rack for surfboards, onboard shower and convertible tailgate. The white Fiat 500L is called the Adventurer and is modified for a more rugged look that could hint at the upcoming crossover version. The Jeep Cherokee Trail Carver upgrades on the Trailhawk package with everything from roof basket to rock rails. To counterbalance the off-roaders, there's also a modified Chrysler 300S with a deep black paint job, special grille, Varvatos-edition wheels and more.
All four concepts details so far have Katzkin interiors as well, and there's also an unspecified Dodge Durango with a storm-trooper look in the gallery above. But for more details on what Mopar has installed on the Ram, 500L, Cherokee and 300, you'll want to delve into the press release below.