AutoGuide News Blog
The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
Back in 2002, a special edition Ram 1500 pick-up truck was launched specifically for Texan truck buyers. Called the Lone Star edition, it quickly became the top selling Ram model in the vast state.
“The Ram 1500 Lone Star was the first pickup truck designed by Texans and built specifically for Texans. Native Texans are very proud to be from the Lone Star State. For the last 10 years, this truck has given us the authentic opportunity to proudly connect Ram with Texas’ very proud state motto,” said Ram Trucks president and CEO Fred Diaz.
In the last 10 years, over 80,000 Lone Star edition trucks have been sold in Texas, and the automaker hopes to continue the trend with the new 2012 Ram 1500 Lone Star 10th Anniversary Edition.
The Lone Star 10th Anniversary edition gets new, larger “Lone Star” badges with the prominent red, white and blue Texas state emblem on its front doors and tailgate. The new badges are also part of an exclusive appearance package and replace the “Ram 1500” badging that other models wear.
More than just the badges set this truck apart from other Rams, inside you’ll find Katzkin perforated leather seats with Texas Lone Star logo’s. The glove box and floor mats also get the 10th Anniversary logos.
Powering this truck is the 5.7-liter HEMI V8, which produces 390 horsepower and 407 lb/ ft of torque and is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission.
Offered only in the Crew Cab body style, you can choose between black, bright silver, bright white, deep cherry red, flame red, mineral gray and true blue for the exterior.
If interested, you can pick up this pickup sometime around June though a specific date wasn’t mentioned. Pricing for the Lone Star edition starts at $36,440. You also need to be in Texas as this is a Texas only truck.
Given how hotly contested the full-size pickup truck market has become in recent years, those manufacturers participating are constantly looking for ways to one-up each other. Most recently, in the half-ton segment, Ram has attempted to do such a thing by going after the fleet crowd with its 2012 model year 1500 Tradesman Heavy Duty.
Although only offered as a no frills work truck, which means just two-wheel drive, a regular cab and eight foot box, the Heavy Duty Tradesman is essentially a half-ton, entry-level rig with 3/4 ton cargo and towing capacity, something the brand believes will appeal to value conscious commercial buyers during these hard, Dickensian times. Besting both Ford and GM’s current entry level work trucks in terms of loading and hauling capability doesn’t hurt either.
Ram has also been playing around with other 1500 options and features, in the Express line, for example, buyers can now opt for Quad and Crew Cab configurations, as well as a Ram box bed in six foot, four-inch configuration.
Considering that the Express Quad starts at $28,050 and the Crew version at $30,010 (with standard 5.7-liter Hemi V8 no less) these new configurations and the HD Tradesman should be enough of an incentive for more folks to consider stopping by their local Ram showroom.
GALLERY: RAM 1500 Tradesman HD
For 2012 the Ram 1500 pick-up will get an all-new base V6 engine, replacing the current unit with more power and improved fuel economy. According to a tweet by Ward’s Auto, Chrysler powertrain boss Paolo Ferrero has confirmed the Ram will get the new corporate Pentastar V6 next year.
While 100 ccs smaller than the outgoing 3.7-liter unit, the new engine could produce as much as a 75-hp gain over the old block for a total of 290-hp, while torque is expected to rise from the 235 lb-ft level to around 260 lbs ft.
In addition to all that power, look for a fuel economy bump as well. With the current model rated at 14/20-mpg (city/highway), the gain could be as much as 2-mpg in each category, or more.