Before even getting to their lots for a test drive, automobile dealers across the U.S. have placed 8,000 orders in three days for the 2014 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel truck, twice the automobile industry’s average.
"It’s every truck manufacturer’s dream to have this kind of initial order demand,” said Reid Bigland, president and CEO of Ram Truck Brand, in a news release
. “Fuel economy is the No. 1 request of half-ton buyers and the Ram 1500 EcoDiesel delivers without compromising capability.”
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Placing the orders between Feb. 7 and Feb. 10, potential truck buyers apparently are eager to take advantage of the Ram 1500’s fuel efficiency, which includes 20 city miles per gallon and 28 highway mpg, the most fuel-efficient for any full-size pickup truck ever tested by the Environmental Protection Agency, according to company officials.
“We have every reason to believe that’s reasonable, as the several-hundred-pounds-lighter Grand Cherokee EcoDiesel is already in production and carries official EPA numbers of 21 mpg city and 28 highway,” according to a review by Car and Driver. “Such trucks represent a new full-size pickup
sweet spot that combines respectable performance, hauling ability, and fuel economy barely attainable in smaller trucks just a few years ago.“
Highlights of the half-ton, light duty pickup truck include a V6 engine with 240 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque, all with low carbon and greenhouse gas emissions. The truck’s 3.0-litre engine is the same one used in the Jeep Grand Cherokee Ecodiesel.
According to Car and Driver, the eight-speed Ram 1500 EcoDiesel is built by VM Motori, a longtime Italian marine-diesel-engine builder and former affiliate of Fiat. The Ram 1500 EcoDiesel is owned half by Chrysler/Fiat and half by General Motors.
“One number you’re not likely to hear in advertising for the 2014 Ram 1500 Ecodiesel is $2,850 — the surcharge for the diesel compared with the Hemi V-8, which reflects the costs of making diesels compliant with modern emission standards," said David Zenlea of Automobile Magazine
. “We’ll let you open up a spreadsheet to decide whether the diesel’s fuel economy advantage warrants the extra money up front. What we can tell you is that it’s a truck you’ll want.”
The trucks are slated to be delivered to dealers in March before the end of the first quarter.
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