Archive for the ‘ram trucks’ Tag

Diverse talent in the spotlight during Black History Month

Over the years, a growing list of diverse FCA US leaders are recognized for their technical achievements, management skills, leadership and community service.

Perhaps the timeliest of these awards are those earned as part of the annual Black Engineer of the Year event held each year in February during the nation’s observance of Black History Month.

And while the event is a great opportunity to celebrate the current accomplishments of several very talented employees, it is perhaps a better opportunity to step back and consider all the FCA US employees of African American ancestry who have earned this important recognition each year for many years.

This year, U.S. Black Engineer & Information Technology magazine awarded its 2019 Black Engineer of the Year Gerald Johnson Legacy Award (BEYA) to Tanya Foutch, Quality Engineering Supervisor, FCA US LLC.

Tanya was named Resident Engineering Supervisor at FCA US transmission plants in Kokomo and Tipton, Indiana, in 2016.  In this role, she leads a team focused on identifying quality issues for the Company’s current and future portfolio of products.

Tanya graduated from the Illinois Institute of Technology in 1995 with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering.  She earned a master’s degree in business administration in 2000 from Anderson University in Indiana.

She is an enthusiastic advocate of STEM education for youth in her community and actively engages with and mentors young women interested in pursuing careers in science, technology, engineering and math.

Since 2017, Tanya has been the energy and passion behind a successful annual STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) summer camp for youth in the Kokomo area.

Joining Tanya in accepting a BEYA award this year were three FCA US employees who were recognized as Modern Day Technology Leaders for 2019:

  • Mesgana Asmelash – Advanced Drive Assistance Systems (ADAS) Verification & Validation Engineer, Product Development (Electrical Engineering)
  • BranDee Tatum – Maintenance Area Supervisor, Manufacturing (Trenton South Engine Plant)
  • Jasmine Tompkins – Value Optimization Lead, Product Development (Interior)

Last year, Eric Burnett, Automatic Transmission Chief Engineer, FCA US LLC, earned BEYA’s Edward Welburn Legacy Award.

And before Eric, Kristal Fears, Manager – Central Stamping Assembly, FCA US LLC, earned a special recognition award at BEYA.

The achievements of these colleagues, and so many others through the years, deserve our attention and respect as we continue our observance of Black History Month.

Read more at: https://blog.fcanorthamerica.com/2019/02/15/diverse-talent-in-the-spotlight-during-black-history-month/?fbclid=IwAR1FoUHpuS3DlOkL5Ouv2arrJ9j2HJ3m5uzkoouZ6kV_DvnerBvbP-mNECE

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Ram Truck Launches New 2019 Ram 1500 Classic Warlock

  • Based on the 2019 Ram 1500 Classic, Warlock features the bold grille with R-A-M lettering, front and rear powder-coated bumpers, 1-in. factory ride height lift, Warlock decals and an available Sport hood
  • First introduced in 1976, the factory-customized Warlock pickup trucks appealed to young buyers looking for a custom-look truck right from the factory floor
  • 2019 Ram 1500 Classic Warlock goes on sale late first quarter of 2019
  • Warlock pricing starts at $35,345 (not including $1,695 destination)

Ram Truck unveiled today the 2019 Ram 1500 Classic Warlock. The Warlock pays homage to the original Warlock pickups of the 1970s and offers buyers a well-equipped, factory-customized truck with unique style, capability and value.

“The Ram 1500 Classic Warlock is proof positive that value never goes out of style,” said Reid Bigland, Head of Ram Brand, FCA. “With its sinister monochromatic exterior, award-winning interior and great price, this mean machine is certain to resonate positively with consumers.”

The 2019 Ram 1500 Classic Warlock features a black grille with bold R-A-M lettering, 20-inch semi-gloss black aluminum wheels, front and rear powder coated bumpers, 1-in. factory lift, black wheel flares, LED fog lamps, projector headlamps with dark bezels, LED rear tail lamps, black badging, tow hooks, unique hood decals, heavy duty rear shocks and an optional Sport hood. Warlock decals on the bedsides round out the package.

Standard on the Warlock package is Diesel Grey cloth seating, ParkSense rear park assist and Ram 1500 Classic’s Luxury Group that includes a leather-wrapped steering wheel, auto-dimming rearview mirror, overhead console, 7-inch cluster display, LED bed lighting and power foldaway mirrors. Customers can also add heated bench or bucket seats, an 8.4-inch Uconnect touchscreen with navigation, black side steps and a spray-in bedliner.

The Warlock is available with either with the award-winning 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 (305 horsepower /269 lb.-ft. of torque) or the legendary 5.7-liter HEMI® V-8 engine (395 horsepower/410 lb.-ft. of torque) — both mated to the TorqueFlite eight-speed automatic transmission — 4×2 or 4×4, Quad Cab or Crew Cab (5-ft. 7-in. bed only) configurations.

The Ram 1500 Classic Warlock is available in Blue Streak, Bright Silver Metallic, Bright White, Diamond Black, Delmonico Red, Flame Red, Granite Crystal Metallic, Maximum Steel, Pearl White and True Blue.

The 2019 Ram 1500 Classic Warlock goes on sale late first quarter of 2019. Warlock pricing starts at $35,345, not including $1,695 destination.

Warlock History
In 1976, the first production Dodge Warlock was introduced following the public’s positive response to a pickup originally designed as an auto show concept vehicle. The Warlock was a factory-personalized pickup that could “play as hard as it works,” according to the period literature, complete with bucket seats, “fancy wheels, fat tires,” chrome-plated running boards, real oak sideboards and special gold accent stripes inside and out. Production ran until 1979.

Ram 1500 Classic
The 2019 Ram 1500 Classic boasts numerous segment-exclusive features in areas most important to truck buyers. Outstanding ride and handling is accomplished via a unique link-coil rear suspension. Other features, such as RamBox bedside storage, hidden bins and a flat-load floor, offer unique solutions for cargo. New “Classic” badging is located on the front fenders.

The 2019 Ram 1500 Classic Warlock will be produced at the Warren Truck Assembly Plant (Warren, Michigan), which has built more than 12.5 million trucks since it started operations in 1938.

About Ram Truck Brand
In 2009, the Ram Truck brand launched as a stand-alone division, focused on meeting the demands of truck buyers and delivering benchmark-quality vehicles.

That focus leads Ram to design the industry’s most innovative, award-winning trucks, emphasizing durability, strength, technology and efficiency.

With a full lineup of trucks, including ProMaster and ProMaster City vans, the Ram brand builds trucks that get the hard work done and families where they need to go. From the no-compromise Ram 1500 that defines the future of pickup trucks with innovative design, the highest quality materials and class-exclusive technology, to the Ram Heavy Duty which combines the ability to out-power, out-tow and out-haul every single competitor with the segment’s most comfortable ride and handling, Ram is committed to product leadership.

Ram continues to outperform the competition and sets the benchmarks for:

  • Most powerful: 1,000 lb.-ft of torque with Cummins Turbo Diesel
  • Highest towing capacity: 35,100 lbs. with Ram 3500
  • Heaviest payloads: 7,680 lbs. with Ram 3500
  • Most luxurious: Ram Limited with real wood, real leather and 12-inch Uconnect touchscreen
  • Best ride and handling with exclusive link coil rear and auto-level air suspensions
  • Most interior space with Ram Mega Cab
  • Most capable full-size off-road pickup – Ram Power Wagon
  • Highest owner loyalty of any half-ton pickup
  • Over the last 30 years, Ram has the highest percentage of pickups still on the road

Giving maximum effort all day, every day with confidence, the Ram Truck lineup steps forward with the full force of modern capability providing confidence-inspiring features and class-exclusive vehicle safety.

Read more at: https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/ram-truck-launches-new-2019-ram-1500-classic-warlock-300795799.html?fbclid=IwAR3j9SrG8RG2MLoXqRCVNF3DXseJ5s54bbi1ve81KmMLhE0SW0qyWrqrbbo

2020 Ram Power Wagon 2500 Pickup Spied

2020 Ram Power Wagon 2500 Pickup Spied in Its Birthday Suit

What It Is: The 2020 Ram Power Wagon, caught completely uncovered in metro Detroit. Even before the recently refreshed 2019 Ram 1500 was released into the wild, camouflaged test mules of the Ram HD 2500 and 3500 trucks were common sight in Michigan, so we knew it would only be a matter of time until we snagged a photo of a Ram HD wearing nothing but the paint it was born in. In this case, it’s a Power Wagon, Ram’s reptilian off-road beast based on the Ram 2500.

Why It Matters: The new-for-2019 Ram 1500 has impressed many with its class-leading ride and well-executed interior, to the point of attracting the attention of die-hard Ford and Chevy fans. If Ram’s HD trucks can pull off the same trick, it could mean some big returns in the cash office, because heavy-duty pickups are a high-margin product.

Platform: While we don’t expect it to deviate dramatically from the current robust body-on-frame construction, the 2500-based Power Wagon captured here appears to be taller and larger overall, taking many of its styling cues from the 2019 Ram 1500 series. As an indicator of its overall size, note how small the wheel-and-tire combination looks in those giant wheel openings. Expect Power Wagon standbys to return, including front anti-roll-bar disconnect, locking differentials, and an integrated winch. It will be interesting to see whether Ram outfits the new HD series with the same active vibration-quelling technology used in the new 2019 Ram 1500.

The grille looks similar to those on previous models, but the hood shape is new, and the bumper appears to be an all-new design that “kicks up” on the ends below the headlamp housings. The rearview mirrors are also similar, but the plastic wheel arches feature a slightly new design with a notch at the top. The taillamps are of a new design, but for obvious reasons the tailgate doesn’t display the Power Wagon nomenclature; the integral front winch, however, is traditional Power Wagon kit.

Powertrain: We don’t expect much in the way of powertrain changes. The 410-hp 6.4-liter Hemi V-8 and six-speed manual transmission are likely to return, although we wouldn’t be floored if Ram upped the gear count for improved fuel economy. As long as we have our wish list out, the return of the venerated Cummins turbo-diesel as an available engine in the Power Wagon would be a welcome addition to the lineup.

Estimated Arrival and Price: Price is still undecided, but without revolutionary technology or powertrain updates the Power Wagon will need to stay near the current model’s $54,540 base MSRP. Expect the 2020 Ram HD and Power Wagon to break cover at the 2019 Detroit auto show. Currently assembled in Ram’s Saltillo, Mexico, facility, Ram HD assembly is slated to be moved to its Warren, Michigan, plant in or around 2020, where it will be produced alongside the 1500. Whether or not Ram will wait until the move is completed to put the next-gen HD trucks on sale is yet to be seen. Either way, tradition dictates that it hit showrooms by the third quarter of 2019.

Read more at: https://www.caranddriver.com/news/ram-power-wagon-2020-pickup-spy-shots?src=socialflowFBRAT&fbclid=IwAR2Mt-7-2am2VB8RXU-lQlVRbPa2CraV4XJmAYXZgQumbWj8F5GlMiplsw0

FCA US Captures Motor Trend's 2019 SUV, Truck and Person of the Year Awards

  • Jeep® Wrangler is 2019 SUV of the Year®
  • Ram 1500 is 2019 Truck of the Year®
  • Sergio Marchionne honored posthumously with 2019 Person of the Year Award
  • Motor Trend “Of the Year” award honors vehicles that best represent design advancement, engineering excellence, safety, efficiency, value and performance of intended function

All-new 2019 Ram 1500 Captures Motor Trend’s 2019 Truck of the Year®

2019 Jeep® Wrangler Captures Motor Trend’s 2019 SUV of the Year®

 FCA US has landed Motor Trend’s 2019 SUV, Truck and Person of the Year awards. The editors of the automotive publication have named the Jeep® Wrangler as the 2019 SUV of the Year® and the Ram 1500 the 2019 Truck of the Year® — two of the most coveted automotive industry awards in extremely competitive segments. Former FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne is honored posthumously with Motor Trend’s 2019 Person of the Year.

Motor Trend’s “Of the Year” awards recognize the best vehicles representing exceptional value, superiority in their classes and impact on the automotive scene.

“The Jeep Wrangler and Ram 1500 are significant products at FCA; concurrently winning Motor Trend’s SUV of the Year and Truck of the Year titles is a proud accomplishment, and a testament to the capability and determination of our employees,” said Mike Manley, Chief Executive Officer, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. “These awards help to acknowledge our team’s tireless efforts to ensure the new Wrangler and the new Ram 1500 stand out in their competitive segments.

“On behalf of all FCA employees, we also deeply appreciate Motor Trend’s recognition of Sergio Marchionne as Person of the Year. His legacy in the industry, and his lasting impact on FCA will be remembered forever.”

Motor Trend’s “Of the Year” program is open to any all-new or substantially upgraded 2019 model-year vehicles. Instead of being compared against one another, contending vehicles are first put through Motor Trend’s full battery of performance tests to evaluate virtually every aspect of each vehicle. All competitors are then evaluated on three separate courses at a professional automotive test center before finalists are selected.

“For 2019, the Ram 1500 and Jeep Wrangler blew away our Motor Trend editors and judges by not only delivering class-leading capability for work and play, but truly impressive levels of refinement, technology, style and comfort,” said Ed Loh, Motor Trend editor-in-chief. “Congratulations to FCA for delivering two real winners.

“Sergio was a special leader who salvaged troubled Chrysler and Fiat, saving thousands of jobs across the globe,” added Loh. “He was a man who did not do something unless he was convinced it would be successful. Sergio Marchionne got the work done and he left an indelible mark on the automotive industry.”

After weeks of testing conclude, the judges determine which vehicles will be given “Of the Year” titles. The winners are not chosen from a direct comparison against other finalists, but instead a result of how each contender measured against the award’s six criteria: design advancement, engineering excellence, efficiency, safety, value and performance of intended function.

A full report on Motor Trend’s comprehensive testing will be featured on MotorTrend.com and in the January 2019 issue of Motor Trend.

Person of the Year Award
Every year, Motor Trend also honors automotive leaders who deserve attention for setting rules or for breaking them, and who contribute to expansion of industry thinking. Former FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne has been named as Motor Trend’s 2019 Person of the Year, marking the third time he has been recognized for his leadership, contributions, and passion for the automotive industry and its people.

2019 Jeep Wrangler
Jeep Wrangler continues to deliver class-leading capability, and has been completely refined to offer consumers a vehicle truly built for work, play and for driving every day … on the road, on the trail and in any weather condition. The all-new Jeep Wrangler is loaded with advanced technology and connectivity, and boasts a remarkably comfortable interior, improved on-road driving dynamics, unique and authentic styling, new levels of safety and security features, and powertrain options that include the dependable 3.6-liter V-6 engine and an all-new 2.0-liter turbocharged inline four-cylinder engine that provides even more performance and fuel efficiency. Jeep Wrangler remains the most capable and recognized vehicle in the world.

2019 Ram 1500
The all-new 2019 Ram 1500 is a no-compromise truck, leading in luxury, efficiency, capability and innovation. Ram leads the full-size truck segment with significant gains in fuel efficiency through an all-new eTorque mild hybrid system in both V-6 and V-8 configurations. Overall weight for the Ram 1500 has been reduced by 225 pounds. The frame uses advanced materials and engineering to eliminate 100 pounds while increasing stiffness and durability for 12,750 pounds of towing capability and 2,300 pounds of payload. The new Uconnect 4C with a massive 12-inch touchscreen leads the pickup world with technology, featuring split-screen capability, 360-degree camera views and exclusive content from SiriusXM with 360L. Active safety and security systems join the technology onslaught with adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking and Blind-spot Monitoring.

Read more at: https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/fca-us-captures-motor-trends-2019-suv-truck-and-person-of-the-year-awards-300755267.html

Love your engine by checking the oil

The gas station ritual has changed over the years. Today we tend to fill the tank, clear trash out of the door pockets and under the seats, and get going.

One important task has fallen by the wayside – checking the engine oil level.

Oil is the lifeblood of your engine and too little or too much of it can cause serious and expensive damage. Also, regular checking lets you see if the level is falling unexpectedly, an early sign that service is needed.

Checking engine oil is easy and can be done while filling the gasoline tank. You’ll even earn respect from other drivers who see you pop the hood and work the dipstick with authority.

We find it handy to keep a roll of shop towels or paper towels in the car. Not every fuel station puts them out anymore. A shop rag works too. Or, in a pinch, a couple of leftover fast food napkins.

Let the engine sit for a couple of minutes before you check the oil, so go ahead and start the fuel pump and clean out the door pockets. Then pop the hood – the release is usually located on the left edge of the driver’s footwell. Then slide your hand under the front edge of the hood and release the secondary latch to open the hood all the way, using the prop rod to hold it open if your car has one.

The handle for the dip stick is usually topped in yellow plastic and labeled Engine Oil. If you’re not sure, check the owner’s manual for a diagram of its location.

Pull the dipstick out of the tube, grasping the end of the stick with the towel and wiping it clean. Look at the end of the stick and see the high and low marks that define the safe zone for the oil level.

Slide the dipstick back into the tube and push it all the way in until the handle seats. Now pull the dipstick out, again grab toward the end with the towel and look at where the oil level shows:

  • If it’s inside the safe zone, between the marks, all is good so put the dipstick fully back into the tube, close the hood and wipe your hands clean.
  • If the oil level is at or below the bottom mark of the safe zone, it’s time to add a quart of oil. Check the oil fill cap or the owner’s manual for the correct grade, such as 5W-20, and use that oil.
  • If the oil level is above the top mark of the safe zone you should take your vehicle in for service as soon as possible.

Many of today’s vehicles also have an oil life monitor that lets you know when it’s time to change the oil. When you get the signal, have the oil changed – old, dirty oil can lead to engine damage.

It’s easy and quick to check your engine oil. You’ll drive with confidence knowing your engine is maintained to perform as designed.

Read more at: https://blog.fcanorthamerica.com/2018/10/09/love-your-engine-by-checking-the-oil/

2019 Ram 1500 Uconnect ‘connects’ with Apple Car Play and Android Auto

 
Ram,Technology,Uconnect |

Lighter, stronger, more capable.

The all-new 2019 Ram 1500 has already checked some very important boxes in taking a winning truck to a whole new level of capability and innovation.

But step inside and discover another leap forward in technology with the award-winning unique 12-inch dual screen Uconnect system. It opens up a whole new level of connection, convenience and personalized customization that will help you keep your eyes and your attention on the road … where they belong.

Two of the most popular apps in demand right now are Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and both are ready for you to pair with your phone on the 2019 Ram 1500 Uconnect system.

This week on #TruckThursday, FCA User Experience design manager Brad Gieske takes the Apple CarPlay and Android Auto apps for a spin.

And join us next week when Gieske shows how easily Uconnect navigation with Highway mode programs your destination with stops along the way to fuel up both you and your vehicle, or just take in points of interest.

Read more at: https://blog.fcanorthamerica.com/2018/07/05/truck-thursday-2019-ram-1500-uconnect-connects-with-apple-car-play-and-android-auto/

Ram 1500 Uconnect Screen Hits a Home Run ‘Double’

Just as home base is baseball’s ultimate winning destination, the unique Home button on the 2019 Ram 1500’s Uconnect touchscreen is the opening play to a road map full of helpful digital destinations.

Weather forecasts, directions, favorite tunes, driving comfort – the Uconnect Home button lets you program all your favorite apps for quick and easy access when you need them. What makes the Home button unique is a ‘double play option offering the chance to view two different apps simultaneously on the 12-inch display with new split-screen capability.

Brad Gieske, FCA Experience design manager, takes the Uconnect Home button for a spin to show how easily and quickly you can hit a home run with every trip you take in your all-new Ram 1500.

Next week, Gieske puts Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, two newly integrated Uconnect systems, through their paces. Don’t miss it!

2019 Ram 1500 First Look

Since its 2009 model-year launch, the current Ram has very gradually increased its share of the full-size truck market from 16 to 22 percent. Half-ton pickup buyers are fiercely loyal, and indeed no other manufacturer has seen fluctuations of more than a couple percent during that time, which suggests that Ram is growing by snagging first-time truck buyers. It makes sense that the truck with the most carlike ride might attract unbiased folks moving out of cars or crossovers, so for 2019 Ram is amping up the comfort, efficiency, and luxury of its 1500 models to keep those newcomers coming.

Headline upgrades include 48-volt mild hybridization, a claim to the longest and strongest chassis, and class-leading 0.357 Cd aerodynamics. Will this be enough to continue attracting new blood in the face of a recently refreshed 2018 Truck of the Year–winning Ford F-150, an anticipated all-new Chevy Silverado/GMC Sierra duo expected in 2019, and a renewed Toyota Tundra arriving shortly thereafter?

Let’s start with what’s not new: the interior window switches, the pickup box floor stampings, and some fasteners. Although the gasoline powertrains mostly carry over, the Pentastar V-6 and Hemi V-8 engines both employ fancy new eTorque starter/generators that store deceleration energy in a 0.43-kW-hr battery pack. The energy is then fed back to the powertrain in such a way as to optimize fuel economy—like helping sustain a cruising speed without downshifting or reverting from four- to eight-cylinder mode. More than 40 shift maps allow the eight-speed transmission and the eTorque motors to cooperate to wring every possible mile from a gallon of gas. The V-6’s unit is water-cooled and contributes 12 hp and 90 lb-ft; the V-8’s is air-cooled and delivers 16 hp and 130 lb-ft. These motors start the engine in 0.55 second after an auto stop, and they’re used on initial starts except in cold conditions, when a conventional starter does the job.

Two more novel fuel-economy boosters: A heater/cooler for the rear differential oil in rear-drive trucks enables the use of lighter-weight lower-friction oil, and a pair of active mass dampers on the frame cancel vibration so the Hemi can lug a bit more in cylinder deactivation mode without anyone feeling it. The ultimate fuel-saver, an EcoDiesel V-6, arrives later in 2019 without eTorque mild hybridization (that same engine in the new Wrangler produces a Ford F-150 Power Stroke diesel-besting 260 hp and 442 lb-ft).

Let’s talk chassis: The entirely new, 98 percent high-strength-steel ladder frame features a taller, narrower boxed cross-section that improves bending strength. Octagonal-section front frame-rail extensions are mandrel-bent and welded into that shape from tailor-rolled sheet steel that varies from 3 to 2 mm thick going forward to ensure they crumple. These octo-rails splay outward to capture small-offset crash forces. Despite a 4-inch wheelbase stretch (to a claimed longest in class), the new frame dropped 100 pounds for a 17 percent weight savings. Max payload increases by 420 pounds to 2,300, and towing capacity increases from 10,650 to 12,700 pounds. (That beats Chevy, Nissan, and Toyota but falls short of Ford’s 3,270 and 13,200 ratings.)

Other chassis upgrades include a novel upper control arm made of reinforced nylon molded around a steel stamping. It doesn’t save weight, but it efficiently adds the strength needed to permit a 22-inch wheel option on 4×4 models. New frequency-response dampers from Hitachi—a Ram exclusive feature—greatly improve ride quality, especially on high-frequency chatter bumps. (Rebels still get off-road-optimized reservoir shocks.) New variable-rate rear coil springs help comfortably shoulder heavy loads without bottoming out.

Available off-road options include an electronic-locking rear differential and unique rear-axle-locating geometry to raise the coil-spring suspension’s ride height by an inch. This setup becomes standard on Rebel models, lowering the entry cost relative to the 2018 model with standard air ride. Upsizing the base wheel from 17 to 18 inches allows the front brakes to grow from 13.2 to 14.9 inches in diameter, which shaves a claimed 7 feet from the 60–0-mph stopping distance. (We’ve measured 122 to 138 feet.)

That claimed class-leading aero figure—a 9 percent improvement over the current generation—is due primarily to a new active front air dam that lowers 2.7 inch at speeds above 35 mph and rises again below 15 mph. It’s standard on all coil-sprung Rams except Rebels and those with the Off-Road package. Raising the sides of the bed by 1.3 inches and sculpting a vortex-generator into the center of the trailing edge of the roof to manage airflow over the truck helped considerably (and gave Ram the largest standard box capacity). The HFE fuel-economy-special model adds flatter, smoother wheels and air-damming running boards that span between the front and rear tires.

Another 100 pounds came out of the body, thanks to clever hydroforming of the front upper crash rails and tailgate surround structure and use of aluminum for the hood and tailgate (the latter saving 15 pounds). Speaking of the tailgate, it offers electric release, a tailgate-ajar warning, damped lowering from any height, and assist with lifting. Added content like this conspires to limit net weight reduction to about 130 pounds—not bad for a cab body that’s said to measure roughly 4 inches longer and a half inch wider and lower.

Ram is parting with a few storied design icons for 2019. Gone is the cross-hair grille, replaced by seven designs featuring a revised Ram wordmark in the center, most of which are offered in multiple finishes. The ram’s head logo, which dates to 1981, gets updated to a more angular look and now adorns the tailgate of all but the Rebel model, which retains the giant wordmark.

The low-fender/high-hood big-rig look is only hinted at now—the fender gets taller and narrower and the hood bulge widens. Oh, and those tacked-on fender flares that adorn over half of all Rams are tacked on more robustly to reduce car-wash warranty claims. And hallelujah! Ram has ditched the metal mast radio antenna most pickups still employ.

Six price classes plus HFE are now offered: Tradesman, Big Horn, Rebel, Laramie, Longhorn, and Limited. These are amply differentiated, thanks to three headlamp and taillamp designs, the aforementioned array of grilles, 15 wheel designs spanning 18-inch steel through 22-inch aluminum (all of which now attach with six bolts, up from five), and the choice of chrome, blackout, or body color for various trim pieces. Also new: Sport (body color trim) and Black appearance packages are available across nearly all of the lower price classes instead of occupying a single rung on the price ladder. Speaking of ladders, a motorized running board is now available.

New electrical architecture brings all the expected safety gear, including available adaptive cruise control with forward collision warning, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, blind-spot detection with trailer sensing, and 360-degree camera view. Parallel and perpendicular parking assistance is offered, but trailer-backing assistance is not. Ram expects to achieve best-in-class safety ratings.

Interior space, comfort, and noise levels will all take a big step forward in 2019, we’re assured. On crew cab models, the aforementioned 4-inch stretch amounts to an extra inch in the front and rear doors plus 2 inches behind the rear door. (The eTorque battery and a subwoofer reside behind the rear seat.) The rear floor is now completely flat and features four tie-down rings and in-floor stowage bins that are enlarged to fit the receiver drop hitch. The seat bottom flips up as before to facilitate carrying large items indoors. Beneath it is a 1.4-cubic-foot storage area (twice as big as before) that can now accommodate rifles or fishing rods. On upper trim models, the rear cushion can slide forward 3.1 inches, reclining the backrest 8 degrees in the process. The entire center third of the seat back folds down as an armrest and cupholders, forming both a more comfy armrest and a better third-passenger backrest.

All of the price classes look classier, with even the cloth or vinyl-lined Tradesman variants getting some contrast stitching and a 3.5-inch color driver-information screen in the cluster. These bench-seat models get a three-point center front seat belt for 2019. Big Horn models add the option of two-tone interior trim. Rebels get red anodized trim and other red accents, seats with inserts patterned after its new Goodyear Wrangler DuraTrac tire tread, and a larger 7.0-inch info screen in the cluster. Laramie leather seats get suede bolster inserts, and Longhorn models add filigree accents in the leather and wood trim.

The Limited trim is what happens when a company has no Imperial sedan with which to separate rich folks from big money. The wood veneers have argent stripes laminated in, and there’s all sorts of fancy embroidery. Leather covers the dash, console sides, and seat backs, and the navy blue and “frost” two-tone leather treatment would suit Aston Martin’s first pickup truck. These trucks reportedly offer more real wood, leather, and metal trim than any other. And between acoustic-laminated glass and active noise cancelation on all models, Ram claims this will be the market’s quietest truck. So much the better to enjoy the top 900-watt 19-speaker Harman Kardon sound system.

A choice of three touchscreen infotainment systems is offered—two 8.4-inch versions (with and without navigation) and a fabulous 12-inch one that seems to split the difference between Volvo’s Sensus and Tesla’s Model S screens (see sidebar). Naturally there’s onboard Wi-Fi served up by a dedicated SIM card that comes with a 12-month “free trial” and five USB ports—four of which incorporate a forthcoming Type C format slot (FCA will be first to market with this) and three of which can contribute content to the Uconnect system.

The front console offers a smartphone/tablet docking slot with Qi wireless charging, and in the rear of the console there are two cupholders across which is a slot sized to hold a tablet at a comfortable viewing angle for rear-seat occupants. Cool. Similarly, the center console incorporates a hanging file folder area in the back with room for purses or laptops (which can be plugged into a 110-volt outlet—there’s another in the rear and one in the optional deeper cargo Ramboxes). There’s also a sliding lid with cupholders and a shallow stowage bin. Inside is an Easter egg image of the four generations of “big-rig” Ram trucks.

The steering wheel now telescopes as well as tilts, the pedals also still adjust for reach, and the front power seats now feature four-way headrests and four-way lumbar adjustment and can motor 0.8 inch lower to better accommodate 10-gallon hats.

As new truck launches go, this should be an exceptionally smooth one because Ram production is moving to the Sterling Heights plant recently vacated by the Chrysler 200. That’s allowed Ram to start production early and ramp it up gradually. Considerable overlap of the current-gen 2018 Ram is expected from the nearby Warren plant, so we can expect a rich mix of fancy 2019 Rams selling alongside lots of 2018 Tradesman models at the beginning. If Ram’s claims on the comfort, quiet, and efficiency front pan out, we’re bullish on Ram’s likelihood of continued market share growth.

Big-Screen Uconnect

Ram introduced 8.4-inch touchscreen infotainment to the pickup world, and now it’s doubling down with a portrait-oriented 12.0-inch screen that works like two of the old screens, only brighter and sharper. How bright? 1,000 candela per square meter. Recent iPhones manage only 625 cd/m2. And at 1,280 by 800 pixels, it about matches the iPhone 8’s Retina HD display for resolution.

Not surprisingly, this tablet doppelganger functions much like a tablet, supporting pinch-to-zoom and the ability to move frequently used app buttons to the home row at the bottom. As in a Tesla, you can view the map, audio, or other content in full screen or opt to split the screen with any choice of content on the upper and lower halves of the screen.

Another cool feature is expanded SiriusXM functionality including On Demand content. This allows you to listen to archived shows or stream your favorite team’s game from a home-team station. You can also pause streaming content of any type and resume it on your smartphone or home system (where you can ask Alexa to resume it). Better still, your onboard cellular Wi-Fi link can seamlessly switch to the online stream if you drive into a tunnel or skyscraper jungle and lose the satellite stream. Uconnect gets exclusive access to this feature for a year.

Read more at: http://www.motortrend.com/cars/ram/1500/2019/2019-ram-1500-first-look-review/

 

2017 North American International Auto Show Details

All Roads Lead To NAIAS

Detroit is where future mobility innovations meet the pavement. With the largest concentration of the world’s top automotive and technology executives, designers, engineers and thought leaders, the North American International Auto Show serves as the global stage for companies to debut brand defining vehicles and industry-shaping announcements.

The 2017 Show

Last January, the 2016 NAIAS featured 61 vehicle introductions, a majority of which were worldwide debuts. News coming out of NAIAS is heard across the globe as more than 5,000 journalists from 60 different countries annually attend to cover the latest and greatest happenings our industry has to offer.

With the integration of AutoMobili-D, the 2017 NAIAS will serve as the world’s leading showcase of vehicles and technologies aimed at defining how people across the globe experience mobility.

NAIAS is unmatched in the industry in presenting six unique shows in one, including: The Gallery, an ultra-luxury automotive event, AutoMobili-D, an inside look at future mobility platforms, Press Preview, Industry Preview, Charity Preview and all concluding with a nine-day Public Show.

The Gallery – January 7, 2017

2017 marks the tenth year of the ultra-luxury automotive event, The Gallery. This event has now become the official kick-off to the North American International Auto Show. Once again, the event is hosted at the luxurious MGM Grand Detroit where a strolling dinner will be served by world-renowned chef Wolfgang Puck in the Ignite Lounge. Guests will then have the opportunity to stroll through the MGM Grand Ballroom and experience a nearly $7 million collection of the most amazing automobiles the world has to offer, including brands such as Aston Martin, Bentley, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Porsche and Rolls Royce. In addition, executives and designers responsible for the creation of these products will be on hand to discuss the brands.

AUTOMOBILI-D – JANUARY 8-12, 2017

Automobili-D is a dedicated exposition focused on the rapidly evolving global automotive and mobility landscape. Spearheaded by NAIAS, AutoMobili-D will run in conjunction with the 2017 auto show and will feature more than 100 companies, including automakers, tier one suppliers and tech startups. AutoMobili-D will kick-off on Sunday, January 8, 2017, the day prior to the start of NAIAS Press Days (Jan. 9-10), and will run through NAIAS Industry Days (Jan. 11-12). A very prominent industry thought leader will keynote Sunday’s opening ceremony following an open house that will allow guests to network with peers and participating companies as well as interact with the technologies and vehicles on display. NAIAS will dedicate specific press conference slots for participating AutoMobili-D companies on the afternoons of both Press Days.

Planet M Hall will be open:
Sunday, January 8, 2017
2 p.m. – 7 p.m.
Monday, January 9, 2017
11 a.m. – 6:30 p.m,
Tuesday, January 10, 2017
11 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.
Wednesday, January 11, 2017
10 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Thursday, January 12, 2017
9 a.m. – 9 p.m.

Press Preview – January 9-10, 2017

Join exhibiting automakers and tier one suppliers along with journalists on a global stage for two full days of reveals, debuts and memorable moments. Featuring over 750 vehicles and countless interactive displays, NAIAS is North America’s largest and most prestigious automotive showcase.

Please note: NAIAS-issued media credentials are required for admittance.

Industry Preview – January 11-12, 2017

Connect and share insights with over 35,000 automotive professionals and analysts representing over 2,000 companies from around the world. This unique networking and professional development opportunity brings together the key individuals responsible for the leading-edge products, technologies and services on display at NAIAS.

Dates and Times
Wednesday, January 11, 2017
Noon – 9 p.m.
Thursday, January 12, 2017
7 a.m. – 9 p.m.

 

Charity Preview – January 13, 2017

Charity Preview is your opportunity to be part of one of the most exclusive, high-profile charitable fundraising events in the nation.

Proceeds directly benefit a wide range of children’s charities that are making a positive impact in southeastern Michigan. Since 1976, Charity Preview has raised more than $106 million, with over $41 million raised in the last 10 years alone.

Charity Preview Date and Time
Friday, January 13, 2017
6 p.m. – 9 p.m.
(Black-tie)

 

Public Show – January 14-22, 2017

Experience an automotive event unlike any other. At NAIAS you have the opportunity to see up-close the vehicles and technologies that will shape the future automotive landscape. From muscle and electric cars, to high-performance supercars and full-size trucks, NAIAS has something for everyone to enjoy.

Dates and Times
8 a.m. daily – Early access for handicapped individuals
Enter at the Hall C Entrance only

Saturday, January 14 – Saturday, January 21, 2017
9 a.m. – 10 p.m. (no admittance after 9 p.m.)

Sunday, January 22, 2017
9 a.m. – 7 p.m. (no admittance after 6 p.m.)

Location

Cobo Center
1 Washington Blvd.
Detroit, MI 48226

Introducing the New Ram 1500 Rebel “Black”

You want it, you got it. Welcome to the dark side, Ram Fans.

At the 2017 North American International Auto Show, Ram Trucks will be introducing a special black-on-black edition of the popular Ram 1500 Rebel – the Rebel Black.

This blacked-out package is the first time the Ram Rebel has offered black wheels, brush guard and all-black interior. The package is offered with all available Rebel Exterior colors.

The Rebel Black interior takes boldness to a new level with all-black heated seats with black “rebel” embroidery, highlighted with Light Slate Gray accent stitching, which traces the instrument panel, center console lid, doors and seats.

The interior also features black anodized bezels on the doors, center console, instrument panel and gauge cluster trim rings. Additional luxury can be had with optional Black leather Katzkin seats.

This special-edition Rebel brings an aggressive, one-of-a-kind attitude to the off-road truck market. It is available in crew cab with either the legendary 5.7-liter HEMI® V-8 or 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 at a starting MSRP of $45,590 plus $1,320 destination. Rebel Black will start arriving in dealerships in March 2017.

* Disclaimer “MSRP excludes taxes, title and registration fees. Starting at price refers to the base model, optional equipment not included. To get full pricing details, see your dealer.

Read more at: https://blog.ramtrucks.com