Get ready for more big American trucks made out of aluminum bodies. As we noted last week, auto manufacturers are sharing industry secrets about how to best use aluminum in a collective effort to lower the cost of materials and building. Chrysler (AKA the newly renamed Fiat Chrysler) has just thrown its hat into the ring with the popular Dodge Ram truck. From USA Today:
Fiat Chrysler, the new name for the combined Fiat and Chrysler Group, says it will redesign the popular Ram standard-duty pickup in 2017 and overhaul the heavy-duty line of pickups the following year.
And the 2017 Ram could have an aluminum body, like the 2015 Ford F-150 coming this year, FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne said.
In a question and answer session after the all-day future-product presentation, an analyst wondered how quickly FCA could respond if the aluminum-bodied F-150 is a big hit.
“We’ll make the deadline. We can do aluminum in ’17,” Marchionne said. “We have the technology in-house.”
With Fiat Chrysler now on board, that’s three big truck manufacturers (Ford and GM as well) using aluminum for their heavy-duty vehicles. Perhaps the next wave will see entry into the next heaviest segment: the SUV market.