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2009 Dodge Ram: Timing Is Everything

In recent weeks, sales data show pickups have fallen from about 11 percent of the U.S. motor vehicle market to just 9 percent, and there’s little chance of a recovery, certainly anytime soon. That’s too bad, as the new Ram has a lot going for it, from the new design to its first true Crew Cab model. The big, 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 has been improved, delivering 380 horsepower and a boggling 404 pounds of cargo-hauling torque – yet fuel economy is up about 5 percent. A coil spring rear suspension improves the ride significantly, and there are literally dozens of new storage bins and hidey-holes all over the vehicle, including a lockable hold built into the rear fenders.

“This is the best Ram Dodge has ever built,” insists Mike Accavitti, the director of the Dodge brand.

From everything I can see, he’s right. And that’s likely to win over some followers who’re not wedded to the better-known offerings in the segment, namely the Chevrolet Silverado and Ford F-150. But, as I said, timing is everything. If the crisis in the overall truck market isn’t bad enough, remember that Ford is readying an all-new version of that powerhouse F-Series, and there’s a lot of great things to say about that truck, as well.

Chrysler can’t afford to have anything less than a hit on its hands, not considering its current financial shape. But the automaker has long depended on light trucks – which account for roughly two-thirds of its total volume. And with pickups and SUVs, in particular, slumping, it’s no surprise the automaker’s market share is off about a point so far this year.

The new 2009 Dodge Ram has been designed to carry a heavy load, but whether it can carry Chrysler itself is a question buyers will be asked to answer.
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Comments (5)
  1. ~~Well it's about TIME!.
    ** DODGE **! was the only true light truck maker in all of North America.
    Until ! ; some wiseguys, decided the only way to rule the roost,
    ~~Was with deceptive , lookalike , masquerade, tactics.
    Some where in this short, story, there is good news.
    The American, consumer, still nows *work&"" VALUE"" for there time and dollars.
    Chevrolet{GMC} , Ford, where never reliable, just very cheap & inexpensive, with very [low]cost replacement parts,{from cannibalizing wrecks-no doubt}.
    With the ** Dodge ** you never cheated yourself out of a days pay, This can not be said of Chevy ,Ford nor GMC.

  2. This year could be a perfect time for new 2009 Dodge Ram. The fall from 11 to 9 percent is a bad part of it, and since they said there’s only a little chance of a recovery.. well, let's just see.

  3. Sarah,
    Umm, can you explain why you think this could be a perfect time for a new Ram? I don't know where you're going with this statement.

  4. This is a horrible Time for any pickup truck, and especially for that macho caricature, the Ram.
    Not only do SERIOUS Truck buyers (those that need it in the CONSTRUCTION Industry) do not need one now, due to the huge slump in new home building,
    most of the FRIVOLOUS Buyers cannot afford it, even if it becomes 50% more fuel efficient, since this will merely mean 15 MPG from 10 MPG, and people need 30 and 40 and even 50 MPG!!!
    In addition, Trucks and large SUVs are automotively illiterate, and Auto enthusiast magazines said so for years, until they were blue in the face, but $1 and $2 gas made auto illiterates return to the showroom for more of them. BUT NO MORE, and that's a HUGE RELIEF for all the rest of us!

  5. If you own a ranch and have to haul hay like they do in every other truck commercial then it's always a good time to buy a pickup. Or if you are building a sky-scraper (the remaining half of the commercials) any of the full sized trucks would work for you. Boy, good thing that half of us are ranchers and the other half are construction workers.

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