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Ram leaving “big rig” look behind?

by David Zatz on

A spy shot from Chris Doane shows a prototype of the 2019 Ram 1500, coded “DT,” which appears to leave Ram’s long-standing drop-fender “big rig” look behind.

2019 Ram 1500

Since the 1994 Dodge Ram, Dodge and Ram pickups have had a “big rig” look with lowered fenders, aped after a time by Ford. The outlines of the current pickup seem to have more of a conventional shape, á la Chevrolet (or past Dodges). In fairness, the company may be trying to trick spy photographers with fake cladding — but they haven’t done that before.

Purists can rejoice in a clear renewal of the crosshair grille.

This is the truck Ram is counting on to combat Ford’s all-aluminum F-150s, as well as whatever Chevrolet can throw at them. Ford and GM worked together on a ten-speed automatic, which both companies are using (with some technology licensed from Ram transmission supplier ZF). So far, Ram has kept the new pickup’s secrets fairly well hidden, but we do have some ideas of what to expect.

Though it probably won’t appear immediately, a straight-six is in the Ram’s future, complete with forced induction — to outpower the current 5.7 Hemi engines, with far less weight up front. The base powerplant could even be a 300 horsepower turbo-four “Hurricane” four-cylinder.

We expect stop-start systems and a hybrid option to bring gas mileage down, a key for meeting CAFE standards. All the pickups may share an efficient 48-volt electrical system. The 3.0 liter V6 diesel engine is likely to continue, with its new programming.

2016 ram tailgate

Chris Doane suggested that the prototype he shot may be a MegaCab; some have claimed that the Ram will be growing in size, while others believe it will stay roughly the same. Regardless, a dual-function tailgate is likely, if only as an option.

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