Fast Trucks Friday: Pickups feel the need, the need for speed
2 days ago
The 1/2-ton diesels have arrived. After the Big Three ditched their plans for light-duty pickup diesels arriving in 2009, Ram has officially announced the availability of a 3.0L V-6 diesel for the 2014 Ram 1500.
Sales could begin as soon as July.
This will be the first 2000-era half-ton truck to receive a diesel engine.
All of the Big Three had plans to offer 1/2-ton diesels in 2009, but the economic down-turn shelved those plans.
With Ram opening the door, expect Ford and GM to be close on their heels with their own light-duty pickup diesel engines.
The 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee diesel, the same engine the Ram gets, is a 240hp Fiat VM Motori with 420 ft-lb of torque.
It’s said to be rated at 21mpg city, 30 mpg highway for the rear-wheel drive version.
The 2014 Ram 1500 should get similar fuel economy, which bodes well for contractors nationwide.
Here’s today’s Ram press release:
Beginning in third-quarter 2013, Ram will become the only brand to offer a small-displacement diesel for its half-ton line of trucks.
The 2014 Ram 1500 will offer a new, 3.0-liter EcoDiesel engine, mated with the eight-speed TorqueFlite automatic transmission.
The powertrain is expected to deliver an outstanding combination of best-in-class fuel efficiency, best-in-class torque and impressive capability.
“Truck owners have been emphatically asking for it, and Ram will be the only manufacturer to offer a diesel powertrain in the half-ton segment with the 2014 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel,” said Fred Diaz, President and CEO — Ram Truck Brand and Chrysler de Mexico, Chrysler Group LLC.
“The half-ton truck market is incredibly competitive, and although we’re honored the Ram 1500 has received a number of prestigious awards, we cannot rest on what we have accomplished, we must keep pushing.”
The 2013 Ram 1500 won Motor Trend’s Truck of the Year, The North American Truck of the Year and Truck of Texas — a rare trifecta in the pickup segment.
Building on the award-winning truck, the 2014 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel will further stretch its best-in-class fuel economy title lead and continue to raise the innovation bar in one of the automotive industry’s most customer-loyal segments.
“The Ram 1500 with 3.0-liter V-6 turbo EcoDiesel and TorqueFlite eight-speed transmission deliver on the demands of truckers by providing best-in-class torque, fuel economy and range. There’s no doubt that being the only truck manufacturer to offer this game changing technology will provide Ram with a competitive advantage.”
The new 3.0-liter V-6 EcoDiesel is among today’s most advanced diesel engines. Its emissions are 60 percent less than those produced by diesel powertrains 25 years ago. The impressive combination of torque and fuel economy marks new levels of performance for small V-6 engines.
Ram’s newest turbo diesel engine is manufactured by VM Motori, a Chrysler Group diesel engine supplier since 1992.
Over the past 10 months, the Ram Truck brand has set an aggressive product cadence.
Ram’s big push began in April 2012 with the introduction of the Ram 1500 with class-leading 25 mpg fuel efficiency and innovative features such as Active Level four-corner air suspension.
The Ram Brand followed that news with the launch of the Ram 2500 and 3500 Heavy Duty pickups. Their 30,000-pound trailer-tow rating – more than three tons more than their closest competitor — and 850 lb.-ft. of torque are at the top of their class.
Most recently, Ram introduced the new 2014 Ram ProMaster van with its own list of best-in-class features, including fuel efficiency, payload, cargo capacity and lowest cost of ownership.