The New Ram 700 Hints at What a Ram Dakota Could be
Rumors have been swirling for months if not years about Ram entering the mid-size pickup segment. The truck maker acknowledged long ago that it was a hole in its portfolio, but that in an abundance of caution Ram was waiting for the right moment to strike and not steal some of the Jeep Gladiator’s thunder. Now that the Jeep Gladiator has established itself, there’s no longer a need for Ram to watch out for its sister brand so carefully. Likely in the coming model years, be it 2021 or 2022, Ram Trucks is slated to revive the old Dakota nameplate on a midsize pickup, but since details are scarce we’ll have to turn to what Ram is doing outside of the U.S. to gauge what we can expect from an upcoming mid-size pickup.
Our friends in the south — namely South America — were just treated to their very own small pickup truck, the Ram 700. Unveiled for the Latin American market, the Ram 700 is essentially a rebadged Fiat Strada pickup, but not without some serious Ram chops. While it isn’t what Americans would expect from a pickup, the Ram 700 does boast some gnarly specs. There are three trims available: SLT, Laramie, and Big Horn. The SLT and Laramie trims are powered by a 1.4-liter inline-four engine that generates 84 horsepower, while the top-tier Big Horn trim is powered by a 1.3-liter turbo-four engine capable of 98 horsepower. Both engines are paired with a manual transmission — common for Latin America — and can tow up to 800 pounds.
While those figures aren’t up to par with the expectations of the American truck market, it doesn’t mean the Ram 700 can’t be a partial blueprint for whatever the Ram Dakota is to become once it comes to fruition. Automakers have a huge interest in this segment, with bitter rivals like Ford working to revamp the famed Ford Ranger. General Motors already offers the Chevy Colorado that slots beneath the full-size Silverado, so they haven’t made a peep about this segment for a while. In the battle of all three big truck makers, Ram remains the only one with this gap in its portfolio.
Today’s midsize pickups aren’t necessarily small, thus automotive experts expect that the Ram Dakota is more likely to emulate its bigger sibling, the revamped Ram 1500. Other models, like the rumored Jeep Grand Wagoneer for example, are borrowing the pickup’s platform along with its technology suite that includes a 12-inch touchscreen infotainment display. It’s safe to say that the door is wide open for the rumored Ram Dakota and that the sky’s the limit when it comes to its design — especially considering the fact that the competition has its very own tiny trucks to offer.
Want to see what features buyers may find in the upcoming Dakota? Check out the revamped 2020 Ram 1500 inventory at University Dodge. You’ll be surprised at how much technology and luxury accents can add to a pickup. Schedule your test drive today! Follow University Dodge on social media to stay up to date with the latest Ram Dakota news.