Confirmed: Tiny Ram Rampage Pickup Will Soon Be Available in the United States

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By Car Brand Experts

Since the announcement by Ram that a new compact pickup truck was in the works for South America, speculations have been rife about the possibility of the same model making its way to the U.S. This speculation gained momentum recently when the brand revealed the name—Ram Rampage—borrowed from the 1980s Dodge Rampage, a unibody pickup that was previously sold in the U.S. Ram also unveiled a design derived from the 1500 that seems to fit seamlessly into their domestic lineup. A reliable source with insights into Stellantis’ plans shared with The Drive that the Ram Rampage is indeed heading to the American market, with a planned debut later this year.
Today, a source disclosed this information as a couple of Ram Rampage prototypes were sighted on Colorado roads, one of which is depicted below. While automakers frequently test international models in the U.S., the heavy camouflaging on these prototypes raises questions, especially considering that the design has already been revealed and previous Rampage prototypes were seen with more discreet coverings. Could there be unique styling elements concealed that are intended exclusively for the American market?

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It’s natural to be skeptical. Usually, vehicles designed for emerging markets face various obstacles preventing their sale in the U.S., but the Rampage seems poised to defy this trend. The primary challenge is the 25% Chicken Tax imposed on imported light trucks in the U.S.; at present, the Rampage is confirmed to be manufactured in Brazil only. Nonetheless, Stellantis has several strategies to navigate this issue. An intriguing option, as highlighted by The Autopian, involves utilizing the production lines at the Toluca Assembly plant in Mexico, which currently assembles the Jeep Compass—a model that shares a platform with the Rampage.

Ram has not been discreet about its contemplation of a small truck for the American market. In a previous statement, former CEO Mike Koval mentioned that the company was actively exploring ways to make it a reality. This week saw Koval being replaced by Dodge CEO Tim Kuniskis in a broader reorganization of executives. However, it’s worth noting that the media release announcing this change emphasized Kuniskis’ profound understanding of the North American market, indicating awareness of the insufficient supply of Ford Mavericks to meet the demand for small pickups and the increasing popularity of unconventional models like the Hyundai Santa Cruz.

Furthermore, in March, Koval showcased what was described as an electrified midsize pickup to a group of Ram dealers, though it remains uncertain if this model—allegedly larger than the Ford Maverick—is the same as the one contemplated to compete with body-on-frame midsize rivals like the Ford Ranger, Chevy Colorado, Nissan Frontier, and Toyota Tacoma. Ram’s current U.S. lineup comprises exclusively full-size pickups, with no smaller offerings since the discontinuation of the Dakota in 2011.

The available engine options are expected to include the 2.0-liter “Hurricane 4” turbo engine found in other Stellantis products like the Jeep Wrangler, generating 270 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque, paired with a ZF nine-speed transmission. Additionally, a 2.2-liter turbodiesel engine is being considered, albeit temporarily, until a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) and a fully electric variant are introduced in the coming years. The Ram Rampage will be offered with various trims including Big Horn, Laramie, R/T, and Rebel, aligning with the 1500 half-ton lineup.

There are many uncertainties still, but currently, the Ram Rampage appears poised to enter the domestic market and compete head-to-head with the Ford Maverick. Those patriotic details in the taillights may just have a significant purpose.

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