AutoGuide News Blog
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After putting the new crop of 2014 half-tons to the test, AutoGuide.com has chosen the Ram 1500 as our 2014 Truck of the Year.
Several months back we posted an epic Top 10 list highlighting some of the priciest, most opulent and downright ludicrous pickups available on the market. Vehicles like the Cadillac Escalade EXT and Harley-Davidson F-150 are but a couple of the high-brow haulers we featured. Those vehicles – and we hesitate to call them trucks – are so over the top they spill into luxury-car territory.
Trucks are big profit generators for automakers. The half-ton and heavy-duty pickup segments are probably the most fiercely competitive categories in the industry. Brands fight tooth and nail for every sale they can make. To move the metal they’re willing to leverage any and every competitive advantage no matter how small. Not surprisingly this winner-take-all mentality is delaying common-sense reform that benefits truck buyers.
Once upon a time trucks were built for work. They had manual door locks, crank windows and AM radios, if they had any sound system at all. Leather seats, air conditioning and voice-activated distractions were out of the question. Like a framing hammer, pickups were simple and effective.
For decades they were purpose-made for hard-working men (and women), the kind of folks that make Paul Bunyan look like a dragqueen. But somewhere along the line these roughneck vehicles became cool with the subdivision set. People living in suburbia started to buy them en masse. With sales increasing so did the clarion call for more comfort.
Today it’s easy to push a simple truck’s window sticker well into luxury-car territory… and beyond. Sure, these vehicles can still handle a 14-hour day on the jobsite and are even more capable than their forebears, but more often than not they’re loaded with costly options that appeal to style-conscious shoppers rather than blue-collar workers. Here’s a list of 10 pricey pickups tailor-made for urban cowboys. The MSRPs are listed without incentives, so actual pricing may vary.
Finalists for this year’s North American Truck/Utility Vehicle of the Year award were announced today — a combination that leaves little space for chunky workhorses from the Detroit 3.
The existing 5.7-liter HEMI in the RAM 1500 puts out 395 hp and 407 lb-ft of torque, but Mopar has decided to kick it up with the Urban RAM concept that will debut at the 2012 SEMA show, sporting a 6.4-liter HEMI sourced from the Challenger SRT8 that makes 470 hp and 470 lb-ft of torque.