Ram Execs Sidestep the Obvious: A Midsize Dakota Is Definitely Coming
Obfuscation-noun ob • fus • cate äb-fə-ˌskāt; äb-fə-skāt, b-: The act of making something mysterious, unclear, or incomprehensible. As far as we can tell, the executives who run the truck division at Stellantis are incredibly confused. This, or they are playing the jamming game. We’re not into big words, but this is at Ram’s headquarters in Auburn Hills.
Last week, Mike Covell, Ram’s CEO, said he might be showing merchants a mid-size concept of “measuring interest.” In 2019, former Fiat Chrysler CEO Mike Manley said that Ram was evaluating a “metric ton mid-size truck solution.” This confusion makes perfect sense if you are not familiar with the truck market in the past 10 years. This is not a stellar endorsement of CEO Ram.
every year. In 2017, 2018, and 2019, their number reached nearly 250,000. Each year. Except for last year due to supply chain issues, Ford has sold 100,000 or so each year since the return of the midsize Ranger pickup in 2019. Last year, it saw sales of just 41,801.
Since 2016, Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon combined have sold more than 130,000 trucks each year except for 2021, when they dropped to 100,000. The Nissan Frontier midsize truck has seen annual sales of about 75,000 since 2005. However, the Ram is still dancing about whether or not it will enter the midsize segment. Despite all those sales numbers, for Ram, it’s a mystery wrapped in an enigma.
There was a time when it wasn’t too hard for Ram to read the passages where they should be. The midsize Ram had been running great before it got the ax in 2011. By then, it looked like Ram had lost interest in the truck.
Its 2005 redesign saw a facelift in 2008, but not much has changed in seven years. While General Motors was developing the all-new Colorado and Canyon. So while General Motors saw an opportunity, Ram pleaded.
“We’ve always said that we know that globally, perhaps the biggest area, the biggest white space opportunity to grow our brand, is the midsize truck,” Koval said. “We’re looking at him, believe me, I am. We’ll see, but I’m thinking of bringing him in and giving the merchants a peek.” Looking hard, will you, Mike?
Ram’s hesitation likely centered around the Jeep Gladiator. Then the FCA might have considered it the company’s midsize truck. So wait to see how it happened. It took some time but it clearly showed that it was a smart move on Jeep’s part. Restricted production in 2021 saw 90,000 sold.
The confusion continues with National Stellantis Dealers Board President Randy Day. He told Automotive News that “it makes sense for Ram to rejoin the segment, but they will need to make sure the quality is equal to the standard Ram has set with its full-size trucks.” As if Ram would consider a lower quality product?
Do car manufacturers do that? Is there a debate among company heads about whether the new product should be of excellent quality or only low quality? He also said he would need to “preserve the brand identity”. Again, are manufacturers considering making a product that looks like it came from the competition?
We know that automakers have strict rules about disclosing future products. But this medium-sized ram dance is getting tiring. Show the world, not just the dealers, your new mid-size ram, and then start taking it out.