RAM begun as a division of Dodge in 1981, even though Dodge had already been producing trucks since the early 1900s. The name ‘RAM’ was first used in 1981 on the redesigned version of the PowerRAM following the retirement of the famous D-series Dodge Pickup Trucks.
The ‘RAM’ name was supposed to be a tribute to the RAM hood in 1933. However, the brand immediately gained a lot of recognition when people began to notice the first truck with the RAM hood and logo on it.
Thus, Dodge decided to introduce the rugged brand as its own separate truck division. After its inception, RAM became one of the most recognised hood ornaments of all time, along the lines of Rolls Royce’s Flying Lady and Mack’s Bulldog.
1985 – 1990
The first generation RAM trucks were rather simple, similar to Ford with the 350 to describe a one-ton truck, 250 for a three-quarter truck, and 150 to indicate a one-half ton truck.
Like any other pickup, the first RAM trucks were available in 2-door, 2-door extended cab, 4-door crew cab, and dually options. In 1986, the RAM went through its first styling changes, featuring a new slight front end and crossbar grille.
In 1988, the RAM became more fuel-efficient due to electronic fuel injection upgrades. Therefore, they gained more popularity and eventually sold 100,000 units per year.
1990 – 1995
In 1984, the second generation of these pickups was introduced, as seen in the image above. These models underwent significant exterior changes and now looked less ‘boxy’ and more stylish. They were offered in the same four body styles mentioned above, and engine offerings including 3.9L V6, 5.3L V8, 5.9L Turbo Diesel and the all new 8.9L V10 engine (which was a gas-guzzler, but worth every penny)!
In 1995, the 2500 series of the second generation were offered in two gross-vehicle weight ratings to distinguish between heavy duty and light duty models.
1995 – 2000 +
In 1998, the second generation of these trucks received additional upgrades:
- A digital odometer,
- Dual airbags,
- A revised interior, and
- Rounded mirrors replacing the classic square ones.
Also, the all-new ‘quad-cab’ was introduced which featured small suicide doors for a door opening at the back of the truck.
The following year in 1999 Dodge introduced sport models of the RAM second generation which featured:
- Revised front ends,
- Body-colour grille,
- Quad-beam clear lens headlamps,
- Restyled bumpers, and
- Heated leather seats fro the luxury models.
The third generation was available from 2002 to 2008.
RAM Trucks Today
These trucks went through an exceptional and fantastic redesign and featured numerous upgrades to the sheet metal, interiors, powertrains, and suspensions. They also came equipped with a larger grille, which proved to be a wise decision for Dodge.
In 2010, RAM Trucks was established as a division of Chrysler. This line of pickups would specifically be sold under the new RAM brand and logo and would concentrate on real truck consumers rather than those who buy trucks for style and image.
RAM focuses primarily on producing luxury vehicles, trucks and of course vans. Even though RAM is marketed separately from Dodge Cars, the line-up still remains as one of Dodge’s best creations.
Make sure to check out our available Demo RAM trucks, featured below.