17 Jul 2018
Ateco Automotive-owned conversion outfit, American Special Vehicles (ASV), won the rights to convert and sell examples of the US-built Ram 1500 light-duty truck in Australia, beating Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Australia to the punch.
The DS-series 1500 had already been offered in the US since 2009, but ASV saw a market in Australia for the big workhorse, and positioned it as an entry offering to sit under the bigger Ram 2500 and 3500, putting it in the crosshairs of top-spec mid-size versions of the VW Amarok, Ford Ranger, Holden Colorado and the like.
It was offered in high-end Laramie guise and in entry-level Express grade
The 1500 was powered by a Euro 5-rated 5.7-litre Hemi petrol V8 delivering 291kW/556Nm, paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission and permanent four-wheel drive.
Maximum braked towing capacity was 4500kg for the 1500 Express Quad Cab and 1500 Laramie Crew Cab that both had an axle ratio of 3.92, but the 1500 Laramie Crew Cab had a smaller 3.21 axle ratio that dropped the towing capacity to 3500kg.
The latter was also the most frugal, consuming 9.9 litres per 100km on the combined cycle, while the former two 1500s returned 12.2L/100km.
Payload in the 1500 Laramie Crew Cab variants was 885kg and the Express Quad Cap took a 912kg load.
The 1500 was offered with standard safety gear that included trailer sway control, hill-start assist, child seat attachments, cruise control, front foglights, rear parking sensors, a tyre pressure monitoring system and a full suite of airbags, including curtains but it was not offered with autonomous emergency braking.