Fiat Chrysler announced on Friday that there would be a recall of 108,000 Ram 1500 diesel-powered pickup trucks for coolant leaks that are tied to reports of fires under the hood and four minor injuries. The trucks that are covered by the Ram 1500 recall were built from 2014 through 2019 model years.
FCA has discovered finding microscopic cracks in some of the Exhaust Gas Recirculation coolers. The reported injuries happened when customers attempted to manually extinguish engine compartment fires.
What Ram 1500 Recall Owners Can Do
Until FCA can alert owners when they can schedule recall repairs they are asked to monitor coolant levels and to contact dealers if they are constantly having to add coolant or water to the system. The manufacturer stated that dealer service reports and other data information combined to prompt an internal investigation. In that investigation, it was found that cracks had occurred causing coolant to “escape and-in rare circumstances-pose an engine fire risk.”
According to FCA in the recall of 1500 Ram pickups, it was not aware of any crashes caused by the leaking coolant or subsequent fires.
Why Two Different Ram 1500 Pickups?
For 2019 Dodge Ram 1500 pickups there are actually two different versions. The Ram 1500 Classic is the model that is part of this recall. Neither the newly designed Ram 1500, nor any gasoline-powered Rams trucks, are part of this Ram 1500 recall.
Ram builds two different pickups because it sees the previous version as an entry-level truck for budget-minded customers, as well as fleet buyers. It is priced accordingly at around $27,000 with the base redesigned pickup going for above $32,000. Potential Ram Classic customers don’t need the latest and greatest. But they might need a regular cab fleet truck to adapt outside bodies like tow trucks or box trucks. The newly designed Ram does not offer that cab. So FCA sees the Classic as having a specific purpose and doing it very well.
Ram also doesn’t currently offer a midsize truck, though it is working on a new Dakota. So the Classic fills the void as it’s priced similar to what a midsize pickup would typically sell for. But, it’s better in some respects because it’s a full-size truck. Again, FCA slots the Classic for a very specific purpose that does not crowd the new Ram 1500.
Two Ram 1500 Advantages For FCA
Another advantage is that combined sales of the both Classic and new 1500 pickups have skyrocketed Ram sales figures allowing it to overtake GM for second place in truck sales. Already 2019 sales are better than in 2018 and the year is not over. So, producing two full-size trucks has had unintended benefits for Ram.
When will Ram stop building two different pickups? FCA does not reveal product info beyond its current model year so no one is saying. But don’t look for it to be killed at least until a single cab body for the newly designed Ram 1500 and a new midsize Dakota arrive. That looks to be maybe 2021. But, if it is still selling as well as it has so far, who knows when Ram will stop production?