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For the second year in a row, a Ram pickup has beaten out contenders Ford and General Motors for the Motor Trend’s Truck of the Year Award, a sign that Fiat Chrysler is taking its business model in the right direction.

According to a CNBC report, Ram has managed to edge ahead of the other leading brands by focusing on comprehensive practicality instead of wrangling for the best towing capability, which in the long run only benefits a small number of drivers.

While Ford and General Motors continue to compete for greater towing power, Ram has worked to perfect a reliable and comfortable vehicle, and it’s working.

Ram has an increasingly competitive market share

Ram has shown steadily improved sales since its reintroduction in 2009, and has started to become a real competitor against longstanding industry leaders Ford and GM. While truck buyers have a tendency to focus on the work capabilities, they have begun to warm to vehicles with more technology and comfort. Chrysler Fiat has further expanded its market by offering a reliable and comfortable pickup at a reasonable price.

Ram has increased its sales significantly since its reintroduction in 2009, and Chrysler Fiat have made it a success by targeting improvements for practical capability.

It seems that in spite of the traditional truck marketing, which focuses more and more power, the practical design and cost of the Ram is beginning to make an impression on consumers and reviewers alike. A consistent uptick in sales proves this point. Sales have increased enough to beat the Chevy Silverado out for second-highest pickup sales in 2019. 

Top pick for farm work

According to a 2015 survey of farmers by Farm Journal Media, the Ram was the 3rd most popular truck for farmers after the Ford F150 and Chevy Silverado, the historical leaders in the pickup industry. Ram’s significantly increased market share over the four years since has likely been reflected in an even higher percentage of farmers who own Ram pickups.

In addition to offering reliable pickups with top-of-the-line technology, Ram has gone out of its way to liaise with its farming customers and farmer’s organizations to learn how the company can adjust and improve designs to better serve farmers. In addition, Ram has provided support to Future Farmers of America (FFA), and regularly sponsor and participate in farming expos and events.

Ram’s visible commitment to the lives of its farming customers goes a long way toward winning brand loyalty. Brand loyalty has proven a difficult habit to break, so if Ford and GM may want to take notice. If either company loses customers to Ram, it could take a long time to win them back.

A formidable competitor

Although Ram breezed past the Chevy Silverado to take second place in sales for 2019, it may not be as easy to push the Ford F-series out of first place. An in-depth review of 2019 pickup sales to date shows that the Ram still trails Ford significantly. This can be largely attributed to a lower base trim cost and numerous sales and incentives.

It should be noted that Ford also introduced a light-duty diesel pickup that does not currently have any direct competition from either of the other top contenders, Chevy or Ram.

What’s more, Ford has been the best selling pickup in America for over 40 years, and it’s unlikely that brand loyalty will change quickly enough to put Ram ahead. With Ram’s 2019 sales already starting to drop in the 3rd quarter, it will need to step up its game to keep ahead of Chevy. Not to mention, Ram still has a long road ahead of them if it wants to catch up to Ford.