Trucks & SUVs

If You Can’t Dodge it, You RAM it

Since the big entrance into the auto industry with the Dodge brothers in the early 20th century, Dodge continues as a household name when it comes to cars. From muscle cars to pickup trucks to minivans, Dodge did it all. The Dodge Ram pickup truck grew a devoted following which ultimately gave rise to phrases like, “if you can’t Dodge it, you RAM it.”

In 2010, the iconic Dodge Ram pickup truck label changed. RAM trucks became a thing, and now the RAM truck still competes with Ford, Chevy, and GMC in the pickup truck segment. Ram 1500 trucks weren’t ever going to die. If you can’t Dodge it, you RAM it… right?

2020 Ram 1500 Built to Serve Special Editions | FCA-00
2020 Ram 1500 Built to Serve Special Editions | FCA

The Dodge pickup truck

There has been a 1.5 ton Dodge truck in production since the early 1920s, though they were officially named Dodge by 1930. According to Brake For It, the break out Dodge truck in 1929 boasted options. Buyers could now choose an engine out of three choices.

“2 six-cylinder Dodge engines that made 63 and 78 horsepower respectively, as well as a smaller four-cylinder Maxwell motor that made just 45 horsepower. It was one of the first trucks that came equipped with four-wheel hydraulic brakes, which drastically improved the safety of the vehicle.”

Brake For It

Chrysler-owned Dodge trucks are among the Detroit-based classic American pickup trucks. But if they were doing so well Dodging it, why did they decide to RAM it? When did RAM trucks become its own entity?

Dodge is a trusted brand with a V8 HEMI that dates back to 1954 and classic models like the Power Wagon. What did the company stand to gain by renaming its trucks? Let’s learn a little more about the history of this audacious brand rebadge.

Dodge RAM pickups

The very first official Dodge RAM was released in 1981. Over the years several awesome generations were seen of the Dodge Ram. During its fourth generation, the Dodge 1500 pickup truck was separated into its own part of the company. The Ram Truck Division was born.

The Dodge RAM became simply the RAM. Additionally, the Dodge Dakota became the RAM Dakota. Chrysler decided not to Dodge its pickup trucks and to RAM them instead. Thus, the Dodge pickup got its new name: RAM 1500.

In 2013, Dodge’s badging was left behind for Chyrsler’s RAM truck interior. It was replaced with RAM, because of Chrysler’s choice to split Ram trucks off from Dodge cars in 2010. The truck got a lot of upgrades in 2013, actually. A new front end grille, for one.

2011 Dodge Dakota
2011 Dodge Dakota | Dodge

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The rebranded RAM

An optional air suspension was available for the first time for the 2013 model. Plus, the truck got a new 3.6 liter V6 engine option. RAM was breaking out and rebranding itself as RAM Trucks. Just three years later, RAM trucks gave us the Rebel. Now the entire Ram Truck Division is modern and on track for success. RAM continues to push forward in terms of technology and innovation.

Chrysler put the Dodge name behind them. At least for their pickup truck segment. They wanted to separate the cars from the trucks. It doesn’t appear to have hurt RAM pickup trucks one bit. In fact, they are selling better and better. RAM Truck Division keeps growing. Both brand names have seen success with a number of models, including the Dakota which is said to be coming back into production soon. Just a bit of proof that both brand names see success, and if you can’t Dodge it, just RAM it.