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Will new and old Rams mix?

by Bill Cawthon on

Automotive News‘ Larry Vellequette claimed this morning that Ram will built both new and old pickups when the 2019s come out, citing CFO Richard Palmer in a conference call.

The company won’t be going hog-wild, though, producing 200,000 of the current pickup in 2018 and just 65,000 in 2019, in both Ram plants.  Mr. Palmer reportedly said that they also planned to build 325,000 of the next-generation pickups at Sterling Heights in 2018, rising to 400,000 in 2019. One analyst suggested that SHAP could actually build more than the 465,000 trucks apparently scheduled for 2019, if needed — one reason for moving from Warren.


The dual-production play will avoid losing fleet sales and keep dealers stocked as the company moves to new models; it will let them ramp up slowly and stop new-Ram production if there are any problems. Palmer reportedly said that Ram “struggles” to satisfy fleet demand, since retail sales are prioritized.

General Motors has kept old car models in play for exclusive fleet use, while making new ones; Chrysler has tried making two minivan generations at once, but that did not work out as well. Chrysler also continued to make Jeep Cherokees even after its replacement, the Liberty, hit the market, but stopped after just months of dual production.

Bill Cawthon grew up in the auto industry in the 1950s. His Dad worked for Chrysler and Bill spent a number of Saturdays down on the plant floor at Dodge Main in Hamtramck. Bill is also the U.S. market correspondent for, a British auto industry publication, and a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association, which has named the Jeep Grand Cherokee the “SUV of Texas” several times and named the Ram 1500 as the “Truck of Texas” two years running.

Bill has owned five Plymouths (including the only 1962 “Texan”), one Dodge and one Chrysler and is still trying to figure out how to justify a Wrangler. He also has owned at least one of every 1:87 scale model of a Chrysler product. You can reach him directly at (206) 888-7324 or by using the form.

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