With a claimed range of up to 800 kilometres — 500 miles — the Ram 1500 REV will stand out from its competitors in the fledgling battery-electric pickup segment, dealers say.
“There’s so much range anxiety as we move toward [BEVs], and this kind of slams it over the head,” said Bill Johnston, vice-president of Johnston Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep-Ram-Fiat in Hamilton, Ont.
“I focus as a dealer mostly on range and payload because I think that’s what’s going to differentiate us from the competition,” which includes the Ford F-150 Lightning and the Chevrolet Silverado EV.
The Ram 1500 REV — Revolution Electric Vehicle — which arrives in the fall of 2024, will have a claimed base maximum range of 560 kilometres (350 miles) and the optional battery good for 800.
Johnston, also past president of the Canadian Stellantis dealer council, said dealers from across North America first saw the concept vehicle at a business meeting in Las Vegas at the end of March. They were also told that the REV will be a workhorse.
A FUNCTIONAL PICKUP
“Not that we’re going to be towing all the time, but the general public looks at it as a sign of competitiveness, of toughness and the ability to work,” he said, “And I look at it and see 14,000 pounds (6,400 kilograms) of towing. I’m going, wow, that’s pretty good.”
Researchers at J.D. Power have been helping automakers identify where they need to be in the EV sphere to give consumers a seamless transition from internal-combustion engine (ICE) vehicles.
“Range anxiety [is] the No. 3 most frequently cited barrier to consideration,” said Brent Gruber, executive director of J.D. Power’s electric-vehicle practice. “It’s very top-of-mind for consumers when considering an electric vehicle.”
For owners of electric pickups, J.D. Power market studies have found that range needs to be at least 490 kilometres (305 miles) for consumers to feel as though they don’t have to change their driving habits, Gruber said.
“With the Ram 1500 REV, you’re right there at that level. And then with the range extender going up to potentially 500 miles, that’s significantly higher than that level,” giving consumers the cushion of range they would need if they were towing or travelling long distances.
Homer Zehtabi, fleet sales manager at Seven View Chrysler-DodgeJeep-Ram in Vaughan, Ont., said he is looking forward to showing the Ram 1500 REV in the showroom because, in addition to range — the product stays true to the Ram brand.
“I like the fact that overall, they kept it authentic to what Ram is,” Zehtabi said. “We see the overall shape of the Ram. It’s not an absolutely different vehicle that we don’t know. Overall, the look is the same.”