Increasing demand for the 2014 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel may outweigh supply


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LAWRENCE, KS--Sept. 30, 2013: When the Chrysler Group announced this past June that their Ram 1500 would offer a diesel engine option, the manufacturer never expected the demand for the truck to reach the level that it has now. It has gained quite the following as it will be the first light duty truck to offer a diesel engine. As the end of the year approaches, the Chrysler Group has only one concern about the 2014 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel release date. They are worried that they won't be able to meet the increasing demand for the truck.

Ram Marketing President Dave Sowers spoke to Edmunds, and said that since the announcement, their phones have basically been ringing off the hook. However, he went on to say that the amount of powertrains that they can produce is limited.

"We estimated very conservatively somewhere around a 10-to-15 percent take-rate to start with," Sowers said. "We would potentially be limited by our suppliers' ability to deliver engines and transmissions in significantly greater numbers."

The engine Sowers refers to is a turbocharged 240-horsepower 3.0-liter diesel engine capable of a best-in-class 420 lb-ft of torque. The EcoDiesel engine will be paired with an eight-speed transmission. With superior torque, the pickup will offer a maximum tow load of 9,200 pounds. Though diesel engines provide increased durability and performance, their best attribute is an increase in efficiency of 30 percent when compared to a gasoline engine. Fuel economy ratings for the diesel-powered Ram 1500 have not been released yet, but consumers can expect them to be at the top of the light duty pickup segment.

With a limited demand for diesel fuel in the United States, the price for the efficient fuel is typically the same price as regular gasoline. It is for that reason that Sowers has estimated that the increased price of $4,500 for the diesel engine will pay for itself after about three or four years depending on the price of fuel and state tax percentages.

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