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Ram unveils concept pickup with a Hellcat’s heart

Michael Wayland
The Detroit News

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV on Thursday unveiled a new off-road pickup concept with nearly 600 horsepower.

The Ram Rebel TRX concept shwn at the State Fair of Texas is the most powerful half-ton pickup the company has ever built with a 6.2-liter supercharged Hemi V-8 engine that produces 575 horsepower.

The engine should sound familiar to Dodge fans, as the brand’s popular Hellcat Charger and Challenger models also feature a 6.2-liter supercharged Hemi that produces 707-horsepower.

“This truck is going to go hard all day,” Jim Morrison, head of Ram Truck-North America, said during the unveiling which was livestreamed online. “This truck is all business.”

The TRX concept shares many design cues of the Ram 1500 Rebel and new Ram Power Wagon, including a dual-nostril front grille. On the rear, a large “Ram” badge in Matte Black is borrowed from the Rebel and covers the tailgate. A custom rear steel bumper with integrated skid plate and tow hooks matches capability features on the front of the truck.

Global head of Ram Mike Manley said the pickup was “built specifically for the State Fair of Texas, and “solidifies Ram Truck’s position as the off-road pickup leader.”

“With 575 supercharged horsepower and a suspension system built to withstand an all-day hammering, the Rebel TRX concept can devour the roughest terrain at more than 100 mph and never look back,” he said in a statement.

Ram spokesman Nick Cappa said at this time the company has no plans to announce that it will produce the functional concept for consumers: “At this time, we’re just gauging interest,” he said.

However, Ram may want to start thinking about it. After the Ram unveiling, crosstown rival Ford Motor Co. announced that its 2017 F-150 Raptor performance pickup will get 450 horsepower and 510 pound-feet of torque thanks to all-new Ecoboost engine and 10-speed transmission.

The Raptor will go on sale later this year.


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Twitter: @MikeWayland