July 24, 2024
          • The Dodge Ramcharger name is revived for the latest battery-electric pickup from Ram, which uses a 3.6-liter V6 as an onboard generator.
          • The 2025 Ram Ramcharger features two electric drive modules that combine to send 663 hp and 614 lb-ft of torque to the wheels.
          • The Ram Ramcharger features a 92-kWh battery pack and works with the onboard generator to advertise a 690-mile range.
  • In what might be the most fitting nameplate revival ever, Ram is reviving the Ramcharger as a battery-electric pickup with an onboard generator. The long out-of-production SUV will get a new life as what Ram boss Tim Kuniskis believes is “the ultimate answer for battery-electric trucks.”
  • This Ram Ramcharger effectively takes the battery-electric powertrain developed for the Ram 1500 Rev and throws a Pentastar V6 under the hood as a 130-kW onboard generator. Despite having 3.6 liters of displacement under the hood, this Pentastar has no mechanical connection to power the wheels, which means this isn’t a PHEV–it’s an EV with an onboard range-extending generator.
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  • Diving underneath the Ramcharger, you’ll see a pair of electric drive modules. These drive modules contain the electric motor, the gearbox, and the inverter in a single unit. The front drive module generates 250 kW (335 hp) and features an automatic disconnect, allowing the wheels to freewheel or coast in certain conditions.
  • The rear EDM makes 238 kW (319 hp) and can act like a locking differential. Combined, Ram says the Ramcharger packs 663 hp and 614 lb-ft of torque and can sprint to 60 in 4.4 seconds.
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  • Powering those electric drive modules is a 92-kWh battery pack. That’s significantly down from the Ram 1500 REV’s standard 168-kWh battery pack or the optional 229-kWh battery pack. Picking up the range slack is the Pentastar above V6 generator that’s good for 130 kW of electricity and cranks the range up to an impressive 690-mile target.
  • Of course, this is a truck, which means at least someone will do some towing or hauling with it. Ram says the Ramcharger can tow up to 14,000 pounds, which bests the current Hemi-powered Ram 1500.
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  • Ram also says this Ramcharger has a 2625-pound payload capacity, which is just 75 pounds away from matching the current Ram 1500’s number. Not bad for a truck that’s lugging around an engine, 27-gallon fuel tank, liquid-cooled 92-kWh battery pack, and two electric drive modules.
  • As you’d expect from a modern BEV, the cabin is full of high-tech consumer creature comforts. Sitting in the middle of the dashboard is a standard 12-inch or optional 14.5-inch touchscreen media system that runs Uconnect 5. This screen also has a dedicated EV page, which helps you keep track of range impact, power flow, and your charge schedule.
  • The ’25 Ramcharger is slated to hit the assembly line before the end of next year.
  • Ahead of the driver, there’s a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster. There’s also an optional 10.25-inch screen that’s affixed to the dashboard ahead of the front-row passenger that can be used to watch videos, help navigate, or control media devices. This extra screen can also view the Ramcharger’s exterior camera system if you need any different eyes to help guide you.
  • A digital key will join the Ramcharger’s feature set to help customers carry around one fewer object, and there will be an NFC card you can shove in a wallet on the off chance you lose your phone.
  • VIEW PHOTOS 2025 Ramcharger interior.
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  • Driver-assistance systems, too, are almost a prerequisite on high-tech rigs like this Ramcharger, which will feature Ram’s Hands-Free Highway Assist (L2+) system, as well as autonomous parking.
  • Ram still needs to finalize its price points, available trim lines, and launch date of the Ramcharger before the company speaks on which models will see what options. Though, considering the profit margins, there’s likely going to be a handful of well-equipped variants available.
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  • Underpinning all of this is Stellantis’ STLA Frame body-on-frame platform. This architecture features a standard four-corner air suspension that will give you extra clearance when you need it but will also lower the Ramcharger in certain conditions to make it more aerodynamic.
  • It’s likely Kuniskis is right–that the Ramcharger answers the EV question for a large group of would-be truck buyers. However, the biggest question about all of this is still the price. If this machine can be competitively priced, it could put a lot of Ram trucks in driveways that the competition would normally occupy.
      • Ram says the Ramcharger is slated to hit the assembly line before the end of next year, so we’ll expect pricing before the end of 2024.
  • This makes autonomous vehicle operations seem like a very expensive Rube Goldberg device, skeptics say, existing mostly for the benefit of companies that sell and service autonomous vehicle tech, with those costs still carried by the fleet operators.
    • Labor unions argue that such a transition to self-driving cars and trucks won’t even produce cost savings for the industry until some undefined point in the distant future, if ever, due to the expenses and new infrastructure associated with the tech.

Robotaxis are understood to have some coding that governs behavior after solid objects, such as traffic cones, are driven over by the car. Still, the extent to which a Cruise robotaxi can categorize those objects and make decisions accordingly is not known.

Cruise has previously stated in defense of its robotaxi that the car initiated braking some 460 milliseconds after detecting the struck pedestrian heading into its path, or far faster than a human could have reacted.

 

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