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ProMaster passenger van news

by David Zatz on

When Ram showed off its new ProMaster van, a heavily revised version of the long-established Fiat Ducato, many expressed interest in a passenger van. Chrysler has not made a passenger van with seating for more than nine passengers since the venerable “B-van” series was dropped in 2001.

A.J. Morning interviewed two Ram officials at the Washington, DC auto show, and learned that a passenger van is in the works. Rather than making it internally, though, Ram will build a “glaze van,” or window van, without rear seating; and, according to Carl Lally, the division’s head of operations, outside companies will outfit it into a passenger van, with packages for up to ten people.

Ram-ProMaster-1-Web

Ram’s “blessed” package could be augmented by other independent aftermarket companies making larger versions, based on the chassis cab version of ProMaster.

The primary advantage of ProMaster, other than a much lower price (in cargo van form) than Sprinter, is the very low height; the step-in height for ProMaster is the same as some competitors’ pre-step, important both for those who must go in and out and for those who serve passengers who may not have complete mobility. The low center of gravity increases stability (especially important given the accidents caused by inexperienced drivers of passenger vans); while the front wheel drive helps to keep weight on the drive wheels in slippery conditions, even when the van is empty.

Learn more in the full interview (including Mr. Lally’s exact words) 

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