stellantis ram ev truck

Stellantis Ram 1500 First Look

Automaker Stellantis has unveiled its plans to revolutionize the pickup truck market by introducing the Ram 1500 Ramcharger, an industry-first electric pickup truck equipped with an electric generator and a gas engine. This innovative vehicle aims to combine the benefits of an electric vehicle (EV) with the range and versatility of a traditional internal combustion engine (ICE) truck. With the Ramcharger, Stellantis aims to address the range anxiety often associated with current electric vehicles, making it a potential game changer in battery-electric trucks.

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The Ultimate Answer for Battery-Electric Trucks

Ram CEO Tim Kuniskis describes the Ram 1500 Ramcharger as the ultimate answer for battery-electric trucks. Unlike any other vehicle on the market, the Ramcharger operates as a zero-emissions EV until its battery is depleted. At that point, an electric onboard generator powered by a 27-gallon, 3.6-liter V6 engine kicks into power the vehicle. This unique setup allows the Ramcharger to offer fast acceleration and some zero-emissions driving without the range anxiety that plagues many current EVs.

With an estimated range of up to 690 miles, the Ramcharger surpasses the expectations for an electric pickup truck. It can travel up to 145 miles on a fully charged 92-kilowatt-hour battery alone, without the extended-range power from the gas engine and electric generator. This impressive range outperforms the current Ram 1500, which has a 3.6-liter V-6 engine and a total range of up to 546 miles, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Bridging the Gap Between Traditional and Electric Trucks

The Ramcharger is designed to bridge the gap between traditional trucks with internal combustion engines and all-electric vehicles. Stellantis recognizes that the industry and the pickup truck segment, in particular, are not yet ready to transition to EVs fully. There are significant hurdles to overcome, such as charging infrastructure and range anxiety, especially when trucks are used for towing purposes. The Ramcharger addresses these concerns by offering improved performance and range, making it an appealing choice for truck buyers.

Stephanie Brinley, associate director of AutoIntelligence for S&P Global Mobility, believes that the Ramcharger could be a differentiator for the brand. It addresses performance and range anxiety concerns, critical factors for many consumers. However, the challenge lies in effectively communicating the unique features of the Ramcharger and helping consumers understand its capabilities.

Ramcharger Extended-Range Electric Vehicle Technology

The propulsion technology used in the Ramcharger is similar to what is known as extended-range electric vehicles (EREVs). This technology has already been available in overseas markets, particularly in China. The Ramcharger, however, takes it a step further by exclusively relying on electric motors to propel the vehicle once the battery is depleted. This makes it the first application of this technology in a production full-size pickup truck.

The Ramcharger boasts an impressive 663 horsepower and 615 foot-pounds of torque, allowing it to accelerate from 0 to 60 miles per hour in just 4.4 seconds. Additionally, the truck will be capable of bidirectional charging, which can act as a generator to power appliances or even an entire home. This feature further enhances the versatility and utility of the Ramcharger, making it a truly innovative and forward-thinking vehicle.

Ram’s Different Approach to Electric Trucks

Ram’s truck strategy sets it apart from its leading competitors, General Motors (GM) and Ford Motor. While Ford offers traditional, hybrid, and all-electric versions of its F-150 full-size truck, GM plans to transition directly from traditional trucks to electric ones without using hybrids. Stellantis, on the other hand, is taking a unique approach by offering the Ramcharger as a bridge between traditional trucks and all-electric vehicles.

Stellantis currently offers plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) versions of vehicles like the Chrysler Pacifica minivan, Jeep Wrangler, and Grand Cherokee SUVs. The Ramcharger, however, stands out as a battery-electric truck with its own onboard high-speed charger. This distinction sets it apart from PHEVs, which rely on an engine to power the vehicle after depleting the battery.

Design and Performance Enhancements

The Ramcharger design combines elements from the all-electric Ram 1500 REV and the refreshed gas versions of the traditional trucks. The truck features illuminated lines across its grille from the headlamps, new badging, and other design and facia elements that debuted on the all-electric truck. These design enhancements give the Ramcharger a distinctive and modern look, setting it apart from other trucks on the road.

In addition to the Ramcharger, the traditional Ram 1500 models are undergoing significant changes for 2025. One notable change is replacing the well-known Hemi V-8 engine with a twin-turbocharged, inline-six-cylinder engine called the Hurricane. While some customers may be disappointed by the absence of the Hemi, Kuniskis assures them that the Hurricane engine outperforms its predecessor in every way.

The 3.0-liter Hurricane engine is rated at 420 horsepower and 469 foot-pounds of torque, with a high-output version reaching 540 horsepower and 521 torque. These figures surpass the current V-8 Hemi’s 395 horsepower and 410 foot-pounds of torque. Although inline-six-cylinder engines are less common in the U.S., they have been successfully used by automakers such as BMW and Jaguar.

The Future of Ram Trucks

The introduction of the Ram 1500 Ramcharger marks an exciting milestone in the evolution of Ram trucks. Stellantis is pushing the boundaries of what is possible with electric pickup trucks, offering consumers a unique solution that combines the benefits of an EV with the reassurance of extended range and performance. By bridging the gap between traditional trucks and all-electric vehicles, the Ramcharger demonstrates Stellantis’ commitment to innovation and meeting the needs of truck enthusiasts.

While the Ramcharger is a groundbreaking vehicle in its own right, it remains to be seen whether the technology used in this truck will be applied to other vehicles in Stellantis’ lineup. As a leading automaker with brands like Chrysler, Jeep, and Fiat, Stellantis has the potential to impact electric vehicles’ future significantly.

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