Chrysler won’t build an aluminum Ram 1500 anytime soon, though the Jeep Wrangler might use the lighter metal it to meet efficiency standards. That also doesn’t mean the Ram 1500 won’t go with aluminum down the road, just that right now, CEO Sergio Marchionne thinks aluminum could be put to better use lightening the Wrangler.
Even with a diesel engine all but confirmed for the next-generation Wrangler, Marchionne still wants to put the not-so-little off-roader on a diet. Weighing between 3,785 and 4,430 pounds, depending on trim and options, the Wrangler is far too heavy to meet upcoming fuel economy requirements with its current crop of gas engines. A new Wrangler will likely begin production in 2017 for the 2018 model year, giving Chrysler time to see how consumers respond to the mostly-aluminum 2015 Ford F-150.
That’s good news for Wrangler fans, and not-so-good news for Ram 1500 fans, who were perhaps hoping Chrysler would also embrace a lightweight philosophy just as Ford and even GM are.With the Ram 1500 EcoDiesel already capable of up to 28 MPG on the highway though (the best rating of any pickup period, by the way), Chrysler clearly needs to focus on the less efficient Wrangler, which manages a meagre 21 MPG on the highway and 17 around town.
One thing all my fellow Wrangler fans can agree on; a lighter Jeep is that much easier to flip over. It’s a Jeep thing.
Source: Automotive News