Truck Mountain may still be held by the soon-to-be-lightened Ford F-150, but the fuel-efficiency battle in the valley below is already underway, thanks to Ram’s 1500 EcoDiesel pulling the highest mile-per-gallon highway rating of any light truck in the United States at 28 mpg.
There’s just something about a diesel pickup truck that makes grown men regress into Tonka-loving children. Even my Prius-driving environmentalist friends in Berkeley admit they secretly want a diesel pickup. The problem of course is that diesel pickups are expensive (the cheapest diesel Ram 2500 is $36,975 and it doesn’t have an automatic transmission, the cheapest oil-burning F-250 is $38,250) and, for the majority of us, the high payload and towing capacities are overkill. While economical in a specific sense, the large diesel trucks aren’t “fuel-efficient” either. Until now. Mark your calendars folks, The 2014 Ram 1500 Eco Diesel is the half-ton truck in America sporting a small diesel engine.
Fiat is now the proud owner of VM Motori after acquiring the remaining 50 percent of the diesel engine maker from General Motors for $47.1 million.
The first half of VM Motori was purchased by Fiat in 2010, with GM exercising a put option to purchase the remaining half. VM Motori now supplies diesel engines for the forthcoming Jeep Grand Cherokee and Ram 1500 EcoDiesel – an engine originally developed for the European Cadillac CTS.
Ownership of VM Motori, the Italian maker of the V6 diesel engines offered in the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Ram 1500, is currently split 50/50 between General Motors and Fiat. But according to Automotive News, Fiat is looking to buy the other 50 percent, completing its ownership stake.
I have acquired two VM Motori RA 428 engines that were pulled from new Chrysler minivans in 2009. The van were converted to electric drivetrain in LA. I want to install them in a pickup but because they were never installed in a truck from the factory, it will have to be a custom job. (Read More…)
The new diesel engine that is expected to arrive in the Dodge Ram 1500 and Jeep Grand Cherokee (which, we hear, has been pushed back a few times already) has had an interesting life. The 3.0L twin-turbo diesel engine never was intended for Chrysler or Fiat products, but rather, Cadillac.
The Chrysler 300 is already equipped with a diesel for world markets, and there’s a possibility we may see an oil-burning 300 on our shores as well.