If the name Dodge Rampage sounds familiar to you, you are part of a small group of people. The Rampage was a compact pickup truck that Dodge first introduced in 1982, but it had a short two-year run before it was discontinued. Now, the Rampage is back, but under the Ram nameplate, and sources say a version of it will make its way to your Dodge dealer in the United States. With small pickup trucks making a big comeback, we are ready for it this time.
What Is the Rampage?
The first glimpse of the Ram Rampage without camouflage is in what looks like an underground parking lot. It has Brazilian license plates, so we can assume it is the model that is already in production in Brazil. This version has the exterior gloss black trim found on Ram’s R/T models. In addition to the R/T, the Rampage sold in Brazil will also come in the Big Horn, Rebel, and Laramie models.
What About the U.S. Model?
A source known to have the inside scoop at Stellantis has stated that Ram plans to bring a version of the Rampage to the United States. And, when a couple of Rampage prototypes were found cruising the roads of Colorado, it seemed to confirm the statement. It’s not uncommon for automakers to test vehicles in the United States, even if they are going to foreign markets, but it appears that all the pieces of the puzzle are coming together for a Rampage to come to us. The trucks in Colorado had extra heavy amounts of camouflage, but there have been others with just a small amount of wrapping. It just makes you wonder if the Colorado models are hiding some of the styling updates that will be unique for the Rampage trucks in America.
Any Ideas on Power?
The Rampage in the works for the Brazilian market will get power from a 2.0-liter Hurricane turbo gas engine. It gets up to 270 horsepower and delivers 295 pound-feet of torque when under the hood of the Wrangler.
The Chicken Tax?
In order to bring the Rampage to a Dodge dealer in the United States, Ram has to find a way to avoid the Chicken Tax. What is the Chicken tax, you ask? It is a 25% tariff on light trucks imported to the states. It’s been around since 1964 and named the Chicken Tax as retaliation for the European tax on American chicken imports. While other industrial imports have fallen to 2% over the years, the Chicken Tax still stands at 25%.
The good news is Ram has production lines in Mexico, where the Jeep Compass is built. And interestingly enough, the Compass shares a platform with the Rampage. Again, the pieces of the puzzle seem to be coming together.
So, What’s the Bottom Line?
It looks like the Rampage is coming to America. Stellantis is expected to make an official announcement later this year, and if it all goes to plan, you should be able to find it at a Dodge dealer soon after that or sometime in 2004.
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