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    Marchionne Wants A Midsize Truck for Ram


    • Ram doesn't have a midsize truck, and Marchionne wants to fix that

    With the midsize truck market on the rebound, FCA is considering whether or not to do a midsize for Ram.

     

    “We’re looking into it. I have a keen interest in getting it done. The big question is whether it should be body on frame,” said Marchionne to reporters at the Geneva Motor Show.

     

    Previously, Ram was considering doing a midsize truck on a unibody platform. But this idea was tossed out due to problems with getting decent fuel economy and pricing the model at an affordable point while still making a profit.

     

    Marchionne says the biggest hurdle for a Ram midsize truck is trying to make a business case for it. When Marchionne looks at GM's midsize trucks - Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon -, he assumes the profit margins are less than the full-size trucks due to pricing.

     

    Still, Marchionne believes there is a place for a midsize truck.

     

    “I think it’s a good place to be. Ram needs to expand its lineup.”

     

    Source: Motor Trend

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    Sure the base work-trucks have a low entry price, but the GM mid-sizers get pricey really quick and use a lot of parts shared with other vehicles.... I'm sure GM is making a healthy profit on each one or else they wouldn't be trying to squeeze as many out of Wentzville as physically possible.  Even a 4x4 LT Colorado 4-cylinder, basically the base minimum for "consumer grade" of truck, is nearly $30k.

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    DOH, is he willing to delay Alfa products to allow the profits to be spent on this instead? He could probably hit a home run with high profits if he ignored the mid size and brought out a compact truck that meets the needs of city folk. Most city and suburban households do not need a 1/2 ton full or mid size truck and would be fine with a 2-3 person compact truck like the Ranger was or Luv truck of Chevy in the 70's.

     

    He seems to have hit his head and is now the Emperor with no cloths.

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    Well it says he wants one.

     

    But that doesn't mean he can.

     

    I know... the whole GM merger fiasco was all about a midsize truck the whole time.

     

    Wait a minute - isn't the jeep truck going to be a compact/midsize truck?

     

    Dafuq?!!

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    Well it says he wants one.

     

    But that doesn't mean he can.

     

    I know... the whole GM merger fiasco was all about a midsize truck the whole time.

     

    Wait a minute - isn't the jeep truck going to be a compact/midsize truck?

     

    Dafuq?!!

     

    Yes, it will be based on the Wrangler so it will be printing money for FCA.

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    Does he realize that he just canceled a midsize sedan selling easily 100,000 more units annually than a midsize truck will?

    Considering the 200 is selling less than 7k a month for the last few months, chances are it won't hit 100k itself, let alone sell 100k MORE units than a Mid Size Ram.

    Edited by FordCosworth
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    Hell if he wants a mid size tell him to read the alpar wiki to find out how CryCo did it on the cheap. The formula is right there in black and white, worked once do it again. They (Dakotas) became unprofitable when Durango went full sizeish with the Aspen.Then without the economic advantage of a suv stablemate and de-contenting plus the melt down, just withered on the vine. 

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    I am with those that want to see a true compact truck back in the U.S.

    ...But every auto exec that speaks on the subject states it would not be a good idear, for various weak reasons.

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    Agreed Ocn, I think the whole Mid size is a viable market but can handle only so many sellars. I think FCA would do best with a true compact.

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    Put the RAM truck line back in the Dodge brand where it belongs! Then do a smaller truck and call it the Goat to go along with its bigger brother the Ram!

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    Somebody tell him FCA is already debuting not one, but two midsize pickups this year, in addition to the pickup versions of the Promaster and Promaster City Fiat already sells in other markets. For the Americas their solution was to build a fwd/awd pickup based on the Cherokee (the Fiat Toro), in half-ton flex-fuel, and 1-ton diesel crewcab versions. For Europe they're rebadging the Mitsubishi L200 Triton, which is cheap but far from class-leading (because it's really only a minor update of the old Triton with a new engine [well, some markets get the new engine, most still get the old diesel], and the old Triton was only a cosmetic update of the Triton before that).

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    Well it says he wants one.

     

    But that doesn't mean he can.

     

    I know... the whole GM merger fiasco was all about a midsize truck the whole time.

     

    Wait a minute - isn't the jeep truck going to be a compact/midsize truck?

     

    Dafuq?!!

     

    Yes, it will be based on the Wrangler so it will be printing money for FCA.

     

    I wonder how bad of fuel mileage the Jeep truck will get compared to the other trucks who have at least visited wind tunnels. It'll be rated 18/19 city/highway, lol. 

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    Just tell them to do a cutaway version of the Promaster City.

    You mean this one?

    cargo-galleryesterni3big.jpg

    With the flatbed it's as wide as a fullsize truck (interior bed width is 2034 mm) and is a 2500 kg GVW rated truck (5500 lb) with a 1 ton capacity.

     

    Then there's the true cutaway (you're supposed to keep it less than the standard 1872mm body width, but clearly Fiat exceeded that with the reefer illustrated). Body platform length can be 2115 mm (compared to the 1818 interior length of the factory tray above). Combined axle load is 2570 kg, but the GVW is only up to 2400 kg.

    cargo-galleryesterni6big.jpg

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    I am with those that want to see a true compact truck back in the U.S.

    ...But every auto exec that speaks on the subject states it would not be a good idear, for various weak reasons.

    FCA has this one, 4.5 m long (compared to 4.9 for the Doblo and Toro), and 1/2 tonne capacity rating (685 kg).

     

    026.jpg

     

    But I doubt it would get better than 2-stars NCAP, as it's based on the now 20 year-old Fiat project 178 platform (Fiat Palio/Siena). There are Dodge versions of this platform for Mexico and Venezuela, but they just change the badges.

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    Does he realize that he just canceled a midsize sedan selling easily 100,000 more units annually than a midsize truck will?

    Considering the 200 is selling less than 7k a month for the last few months, chances are it won't hit 100k itself, let alone sell 100k MORE units than a Mid Size Ram.

     

     

    Until December, they were selling 10-15k units a month with summer months pushing 20k. If that's not an incredible success for the Chrysler brand, I don't know what is.

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    The 200 is a good car, in a field of great American cars and two great japanese cars from Mazonda...and maybe one decent Korean car and the recent fall off a cliff.

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    Put the RAM truck line back in the Dodge brand where it belongs! Then do a smaller truck and call it the Goat to go along with its bigger brother the Ram!

    Haha, and then sell an off-road version... called the Mountain Goat, of course!

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    Just tell them to do a cutaway version of the Promaster City.

    You mean this one?

    cargo-galleryesterni3big.jpg

    With the flatbed it's as wide as a fullsize truck (interior bed width is 2034 mm) and is a 2500 kg GVW rated truck (5500 lb) with a 1 ton capacity.

     

    Then there's the true cutaway (you're supposed to keep it less than the standard 1872mm body width, but clearly Fiat exceeded that with the reefer illustrated). Body platform length can be 2115 mm (compared to the 1818 interior length of the factory tray above). Combined axle load is 2570 kg, but the GVW is only up to 2400 kg.

    cargo-galleryesterni6big.jpg

     

    Hi griffon, I always enjoy your posts.  That Doblo pickup is a very capable machine, seems like.  The amazing, borderline comical looks of it seal the deal!  With a diesel engine yet, it would be the ultimate non-conformist, awkward superstar pickup truck!

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    Well it says he wants one.

     

    But that doesn't mean he can.

     

    I know... the whole GM merger fiasco was all about a midsize truck the whole time.

     

    Wait a minute - isn't the jeep truck going to be a compact/midsize truck?

     

    Dafuq?!!

     

    Yes, it will be based on the Wrangler so it will be printing money for FCA.

     

    I wonder how bad of fuel mileage the Jeep truck will get compared to the other trucks who have at least visited wind tunnels. It'll be rated 18/19 city/highway, lol. 

     

    Actually the current Wranglers are already rated over 20 MPG on the hwy with the old 5 speed auto.  This will be based on the new Wrangler which will be lighter, more aerodynamic, and have the 8 speed auto. m I say it will not have a problem matching Colorado FE engine for engine. 

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    Well it says he wants one.

     

    But that doesn't mean he can.

     

    I know... the whole GM merger fiasco was all about a midsize truck the whole time.

     

    Wait a minute - isn't the jeep truck going to be a compact/midsize truck?

     

    Dafuq?!!

     

    Yes, it will be based on the Wrangler so it will be printing money for FCA.

     

    I wonder how bad of fuel mileage the Jeep truck will get compared to the other trucks who have at least visited wind tunnels. It'll be rated 18/19 city/highway, lol. 

     

    Actually the current Wranglers are already rated over 20 MPG on the hwy with the old 5 speed auto.  This will be based on the new Wrangler which will be lighter, more aerodynamic, and have the 8 speed auto. m I say it will not have a problem matching Colorado FE engine for engine. 

     

    No chance it would match the Colorado if they are working on similar drivelines. I mean even if the Wrangler truck had the newest 8 or 9spd from the FCA camp you're still talking about pushing a brick through air. I highly doubt they will be ballsy enough to change the look of the new Wrangler enough to be considered "aero efficient" by anybody's standards. 

     

    I can't imagine it changing much from the current Wrangler's 16/21. I would definitely expect improvements but not a whole lot. 17/24 in its most efficient trim. Now if it has a 2WD version that would get another little bump over the Wranglers but I just don't see a way that this will match a Colorado's 18/26 in the v6 at all. 

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    • By William Maley
      Like life, reviewing vehicles sometimes mean having a curveball thrown your way. Originally, I was going to be reviewing the Chrysler 200 before its production run would end. Sadly, the 200 was pulled out of Chrysler’s test fleet before I was able to drive. But sometimes, that curveball can be a positive. In this case, a Ram 1500 Laramie Longhorn would take its place. More importantly, it would be equipped with the 3.0L EcoDiesel V6. We like this engine in the Jeep Grand Cherokee. How would it fare in the Ram 1500? Quite well.
      The EcoDiesel V6 in question is a turbocharged 3.0L with 240 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque. This comes paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. Our test truck came with four-wheel drive, but you can order the EcoDiesel with two-wheel drive. The EcoDiesel might not have the roar or performance figures of the 5.7L V8 (0-60 takes about 9 seconds for the diesel compared to just a hair over 7 seconds for the V8), but it is a very capable engine. There is a lot of punch on the low end of the rpm band and the engine never feels that it is running out of breath the higher you climb in speed.  You can tell the EcoDiesel is a diesel during start up as it has distinctive clatter. Also, it takes a few seconds for the engine to start up if you let the truck sit for awhile. But once the engine is going, you can’t really tell its a diesel. Whether you’re standing outside or sitting inside, the V6 is quiet and smooth. The eight-speed automatic is one of the best transmissions in the class as it delivers imperceptible gear changes. In terms of towing, the EcoDiesel V6 has a max tow rating of 9,210 pounds (regular cab with 2WD). The crew cab with 4WD drops the max tow rating to 8,610 pounds. This does trail the V8 considerably (max tow rating of 10,640). But the EcoDiesel makes up for this in terms of fuel economy. EPA fuel economy figures stand at 19 City/27 Highway/22 Combined for the EcoDiesel equipped 4WD. Our average for the week was a not too shabby 23.4 mpg. This generation of the Ram 1500 has garnered a reputation for having one of the best rides in the class. We can’t disagree. The coil-spring setup on the rear suspension smooths out bumps and other road imperfections very well.  Our truck also featured the optional air suspension which is more focused on improving the capability of the pickup and not ride comfort. There are five different ride height settings that allow for easier access when getting in and out of a truck to increasing ground clearance when going off-road. The air suspension will also level out the truck if there is a heavy load in the bed or pulling a trailer. The Ram 1500’s exterior look hasn’t really changed much since we reviewed one back in 2014. Up front is a large crosshair grille finished in chrome and large rectangular headlights with LED daytime running lights. The Laramie Longhorn features it own design cues such as two-tone paint finish, 20-inch wheels, and large badges on the front doors telling everyone which model of Ram you happen to be driving. Inside, the Laramie Longhorn is well appointed with real wood trim on the dash and steering wheel, high-quality leather upholstery for the seats, and acres of soft-touch plastics. Some will snicker at the seat pockets that are designed to look saddle bags, complete with a chrome clasp.  Comfort-wise, the Laramie Longhorn’s interior scores very high. The seats provide excellent support for long trips, and no one sitting in the back will be complaining about the lack of head and legroom. One nice touch is all of the seats getting heat as standard equipment, while the front seats get ventilation as well. The UConnect system is beginning to show its age with an interface that is looking somewhat dated and certain tasks taking a few seconds more than previous versions. There is an updated UConnect system that debuted on the 2017 Pacifica with a tweaked interface and quicker performance. Hopefully, this is in the cards for the 2017 Ram 1500. As for pricing, the Laramie Longhorn Crew Cab 4x4 comes with a base price $52,365. With options including the 3.0L EcoDiesel, our as-tested price was $60,060. Sadly this is the new reality for pickup trucks. Many buyers want the luxuries and features found on standard vehicles and are willing to pay for it. The Ram 1500 Laramie Longhorn Crew Cab 4x4 can justify the price for what it offers, but it is still a lot of money to drop. The nice thing about the Ram 1500 is the number of trims on offer. You’ll be able to find a model that should fit your needs and price range. Personally, I would be happy with a Big Horn or Laramie as they would offer everything I would want or need in a truck. But if you want something luxurious with a cowboy twist, you can’t go wrong with Laramie Longhorn. The EcoDiesel is just the cherry on top.   
      Disclaimer: Ram Trucks Provided the 1500, Insurance, and One Tank of Diesel
      Year: 2016
      Make: Ram Trucks
      Model: 1500 Crew Cab
      Trim: Laramie Longhorn
      Engine: 3.0L EcoDiesel V6
      Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, Four-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 240 @ 3,600
      Torque @ RPM: 420 @ 2,000
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 19/27/22
      Curb Weight: N/A
      Location of Manufacture: Warren, MI
      Base Price: $52,365
      As Tested Price: $60,060 (Includes $1,195.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      3.0L EcoDiesel V6 - $3,120.00
      4-Corner Air Suspension - $1,695.00
      Wheel to Wheel Side Steps - $600.00
      Convenience Group - $495.00
      Trailer Brake Control - $280.00
      Cold Weather Group - $235.00
      3.92 Rear Axle Ratio - $75.00
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