Speculation

Here's everything we know about the 2021 Ram 1500 TRX

The Ram Rebel TRX Concept was first shown in 2017, it hinted that a Ford Raptor-fighter was on the way.

Photo courtesy of FCA US LLC

The Raptor-fighting Ram 1500 TRX is almost ready to go on sale, if the latest photo leaks are any indication. The Fast Lane Truck (TFL) was the first outlet to show the pictures.

The 2022 Ram 1500 TRX was allegedly set to be shown in the flesh for the first time at this year's North America International Auto Show, originally set for the first week of June in Detroit. Now that the COVID-19 pandemic has pushed that auto show to 2021, the truck's debut date is less certain.

2017 Ram Rebel TRX ConceptThe prototype model featured a number of elements that will likely translate to the new truck.Photo courtesy of FCA US LLC

TFL got the photos via an anonymous message. Two of them show the exterior and four show the interior. Combined with camouflaged prototype photos that were distributed last week, we end up with a pretty good idea of what to expect from the model.

Here's what we know.

The Ram Rebel TRX and Ford Raptor will be about the same size.

Media and enthusiasts have dubbed the truck a Raptor-flghter. This starts with the base of the model. The Raptor is based on the Ford F-150. Similarly, the Ram Rebel TRX is based on the Ram 1500. The two trucks are likely to be nearly the same size.

It will likely be powered by FCA's Hellcat engine.

Traditionally tuned, the powerful 6.2-liter V8 boasts over 700 horsepower and nearly 700 pound-feet of torque and is currently featured under the hood of select Dodge Challenger and Charger models, which more than what you'll find offered in most Ferraris and Lamborghinis. In the Dodge Challenger Demon, the same engine was tuned to get 797 horsepowerand 707 pound-feet of torque. In the Challenger Demon, the model could sprint nearly as quick as a Bugatti Veyron.

The truck probably won't be fuel efficient.

According to EPA estimates, the 6.2-liter V8 in the Challenger delivers 16 mpg combined. In the Charger, it gets 15 mpg combined and in the 2020 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk just 13 mpg combined. That being said, expect the Rebel TRX to be thirsty.

It's worth noting that the 2020 Ford F-150 Raptor's turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 is nearly as inefficient, getting an EPA-estimated 16 mpg combined.

It's called the Rebel TRX for a reason and that has some equipment and features implications.

As is, the Ram 1500 Rebel is a mid-grade model in the truck's lineup. It comes standard with a long list of equipment and available features including an electronic-locking differential, 3.92 axle ratio, 8.4-inch infotainment touch screen, Bluetooth, satellite radio, 8-speaker sound system, and a rearview camera with gridlines. It's pretty safe to assume that the Rebel TRX will come standard with most of the equipment listed for the Rebel, possibly offering many of the elements only available as part of add-on packages like keyless entry and power-adjustable pedals as standard.

Expect it to have Ram Power Wagon-like parts.

If the Rebel TRX is to be a true Raptor-fighter, it needs to be incredibly proficient off-road. Having the type of equipment on its body that comes with the Ram Power Wagon would be a big step in the right direction.

The Power Wagon comes standard with a unique Articulink suspension, front/rear Bilstein shocks (Power Wagon tuned), hill-descent control, Tru-Lok front/rear axles, tow hooks, fuel tank skid plate, transfer case skid plate, front electronic 12,000-pound winch, fog lamps, front disconnecting stabilizer bar, and rear wheel well liners.

The truck will have a factory lift. 

Almost all the spy photos released so far have the truck shown with a lift, similar to how the Ram Power Wagon is lifted. It appears to ride on wheels less than 18-inches.

There will be Easter eggs.

FCA is notorious for hiding unique design elements inside and outside their vehicle. These hidden elements make for a bit of fun for enthusiasts but Ram might have the most fun yet. According to the leaked photos, there's the image of a truck alongside two dinosaurs, a tynansaurus rex chasing a velociraptor. While that sneaky nudge in Ford's direction offers a bit of fun, it also shows what appears to be a crew cab, 5'7" box model of the Ram truck model. In the words of Dr. Watson, "A clue!" It possibly is.

The interior of the truck is pretty luxe.

The leaked photos show that the interior of the truck is well-appointed, not that we'd expect anything less from a modern Ram 1500 model. The seats appear to be two-tone leather (black and red, in keeping with Ram 1500 Rebel heritage) with perforated inserts.

There's a traditional shifter with a leather boot instead of the rotary shifter that FCA has become so fond of having. The photo shows that the shifter has manual shifting capability, which off-roading enthusiasts would find particularly helpful.

On the center stack there's two USB and two USB-C ports as well as an AUX outlet. There are also auxiliary control buttons.

The Ram Rebel TRX will have trailering capability.

The leaked photos reveal trailer brake controls and a trailer steering control on the center stack. The towing capacity of the Ram 1500 is 6,280 to 7,730 pounds. The Rebel TRX will likely not have less capability than that.

Pricing

Pricing for the Ram Rebel TRX has not yet been released, and it likely won't be until right before the truck goes on sale. If it's a 2022 model year truck, expect sales to start in early to mid-2021.

You can see TFL's video featuring the leaked photos here:

LEAKED: See Under The Hood and Inside the Ram 1500 TRX in These New Images!www.youtube.com

Trending News

 
 

The IIHS may increase the speeds it uses to test advanced driver aids.

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) recently announced that it is considering changing the speeds it uses to test vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention systems. The agency currently tests the systems at 12 and 25 mph, but says that the speeds don't accurately represent the types of crashes the safety tech is meant to prevent.

Front crash preventionwww.youtube.com

Automatic emergency braking (AEB) is designed to notify of a possible collision and help respond with automatic application of braking. Just like a human using the brake pedal, it can stop the car, but higher speeds make it difficult to stop in time. The new tests would be conducted at 35 to 45 mph, which is the range where a large number of rear-end crashes occur. As Automotive News noted, an IIHS study showed 43 percent of rear-end crashes occur at speeds of 45 mph or less, so it's important to have a test that shows how well the tech performs at those levels.

A whopping 85 percent of 2022 vehicles earned a "Superior" rating in the current testing regime, so the IIHS will remove it from 2023 testing and Top Safety Pick award evaluations. Their view is that, since the majority of vehicles meet the criteria, it's no longer an accurate way of evaluating performance. In its place, the agency introduced a night test for automatic emergency braking systems that will begin next year.

Trending News

 
 

Lincoln will not make a performance variant to compete with Cadillac.

Lincoln

TheLincoln Navigator and Cadillac Escalade have been duking it out at the top of luxury SUV rankings for decades, but there’s one area of the Caddy’s development that Lincoln won’t touch. In a recent interview, a company executive told Ford Authority that it has no plans to create a performance variant of the Navigator to compete with the upcoming Escalade V from Cadillac.

2022 Lincoln NavigatorThe new Navigator features several upscale touches and excellent tech. Lincoln

That means the Navigator will stick with the powertrain it’s carried for years, which is a twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine that makes 440 horsepower and 510 pound-feet of torque. It’s paired with a smooth ten-speed automatic and either rear- or four-wheel drive. While there’s more than enough power to get the hulking Lincoln moving, it’s not a powertrain that inspires excitement or engagement, and though beefy, it’s tuned much more for comfort and quietness than drama.

Though more than adequate, those specs are a far cry from the numbers we expect from the Escalade V. The full-size bruiser from Cadillac is expected to get a supercharged 6.2-liter V8, similar to the unit seen in the CT5-V Blackwing and Chevrolet Camaro ZL1. We don’t know power numbers yet, but the engine should deliver horsepower and torque numbers in the high 600s.

Cadillac Escalade VThe Escalade V will be massively powerful. Cadillac

That Lincoln is taking a different approach isn’t surprising. The automaker has already announced its intention to go all-electric, so pouring more time and resources into creating a performance gas-powered SUV isn’t in line with its goals. Company executives have also expressed a desire to avoid imitating rivals, so the decision to leave a performance Navigator behind is not surprising.

Trending News