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Ram confirms Ford Ranger-battling pick-up

Locking horns: A production version of the Ram Rebel TRX Concept (pictured) will be put into production to take on the likes of the Ford F-150 Raptor.

Mid-size pick-up, F-150 Raptor-rivalling TRX, new 2500 replacement for Ram by 2022

Ram logo4 Jun 2018

RAM has unveiled its global plans for the next five years, with the pick-up specialist announcing it will build a one-tonne pick-up to rival the likes of the Toyota HiLux and Ford Ranger, as well as a production version of the savage Rebel TRX concept.
 
Concrete details remain light-on for the new truck, other than it will compete with the likes of the Chevrolet Colorado and Ford Ranger in the US market. Potential powertrains have not been detailed.
 
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) Australia is yet to comment on any news regarding its brands’ five-year plans, and whether it would like to add a mid-size Ram pick-up to its local stable.
 
Fans of high-performance pick-ups will be buoyed by the news that Ram is taking its Rebel TRX Concept from 2016 into production to go head-to-head with the likes of Ford’s F-150 Raptor.
 
Based on the 3500 pick-up, the TRX Concept packs a mighty 430kW 6.2-litre supercharged Hemi V8 engine, widened wheel tracks, 37-inch tyres and jacked-up suspension.
 
While it is expected to retain the beefy petrol V8, it is unknown how much of the concept’s performance parts will be carried over. 
 
The production version will be based on the all-new 1500 light duty truck revealed earlier in the year, placing it squarely in the crosshairs of the F-150 Raptor.
 
Ram has decided to introduce the TRX to help capitalise on the increasing desire for well-specced pick-up trucks, as evidenced by average light duty transaction prices in the US.
 
While the average transaction price for the outgoing Ram 1500 has been $US37,000, its competitors are able to sell their offerings at a higher average price, with the Chevrolet Silverado commanding $39,000 on average and the F-150 $43,000. 
 
Additionally, F-150 Raptors are sold at an average of $71,000 per unit, $28,000 above the Blue Oval’s average in the segment.
 
Currently, Ram only holds a 9.6 per cent share of pick-ups sold in the US priced at or above $45,000, while for Ford that figure sits at 57.6 per cent.
 
A hybrid-electric version of the 1500 is also planned by 2022, which will be the only vehicle in the Ram range to experience electrification.
 
The 2500/3500 heavy duty truck, currently converted to right-hand drive by American Special Vehicles and distributed in Australia by Ateco Automotive, will receive an all-new update in January next year. 
 
While Ram has been able to match Chevy and its Silverado heavy duty with a $50,000 average transaction price, Ford still leads the way on $56,000. The brand anticipates the arrival of the new version will push its average transaction price up to around $54,000-$55,000.
 
As for the commercial van segments, a new version of Ram’s ProMaster city small van – based on the Fiat Doblo – will launch at some point, while the larger Fiat Ducato-based ProMaster will go through the next five-year stretch unchanged.
 
Ram is predicting the pick-up truck and van segments to grow globally by around 800,000 units between 2018 and 2022 to 15.6 million units, with Asia Pacific to do most of the heavy lifting with an extra 500,000 units forecast to be added to the region. North America is predicted to remain static during this time.
 
In that time, Ram hopes to ramp its sales up from a predicted 770,000 in 2018 to one million in 2022, becoming the second-largest commercial vehicle brand in North America.

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