Ram Goes Professional
One of the things that may have gotten lost in the coverage of the LA Auto Show is that Ram Truck, the division of Chrysler that used to be, essentially, a model within the offerings of Chrysler (e.g., a Dodge Ram 1500 pickup), announced that it has launched a division within itself: Ram Commercial.
Which, as its name implies, means that there will be a concentration on those who own or use their trucks for business. Specifically, Ram Commercial is defining “commercial” as for vehicles that are:
--Titled in a company or corporation
--Used for business but titled in an individual’s name (as in a sole proprietor)
-- >26,000 lb. GVWR
--Used to haul any hazardous material
Fred Diaz and Rams
Said Fred Diaz, president and CEO, Ram Truck Brand and Chrysler de Mexico, “Ram Truck is committed to delivering the best value proposition with low total cost of ownership across the entire product line up. From the Ram 5500 Chassis Cab to the Ram C/V, we’re providing best-in-class capability and technology.”
The lineup of Ram Commercial will include the Ram 1500, 2500 and 3500 pickups; 3500, 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs, Ram C/V, and the Ram ProMaster vans.
Ram Commercial lineup
A couple of points. One is that while it may seem a bit odd that Fred Diaz runs both Ram Truck and Chrysler de Mexico, the Chrysler Saltillo Truck Assembly Plant in Saltillo, Mexico, is a source of several of these truck models.
30 years of Ducato
Second, although the Ram ProMaster is a “new” product in the Ram lineup, this is actually based on the Fiat Ducato (remember: Fiat controls Chrysler) from the division of the Italian vehicle manufacturer named Fiat Professional. The Ducato full-size commercial vans have been available in Europe since 1981, and well over 2 million have been sold since then, so this is not an unproven product by any stretch of the imagination.
Who buys commercial vehicles of the type being offered by Ram Commercial? The company breaks it down like this:
--Service and repairs, 24%
--Large-medium businesses, 8%
--Small businesses, 8%
--Machinery/electronic products, 6%
--Wood/metal/stone products, 2%
--Food and beverage, 1%
The Ram Truck brand, incidentally, has been performing quite-well sales wise during the past several months. Presumably the line extension will add even more to the bottom line going forward.
Ram Truck chief exterior designer Joe Dehner talks about how they’ve developed the all-new pickup. “We’ve been building trucks for over 100 years,” he says. “Best I could come up with is that this is our 15th-generation truck.”
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