Chrysler Canada will start building a “lifestyle” pickup truck at its giant assembly plant in Windsor, Ont., in the fall of 2013, industry insiders say. It will be a direct competitor to Ridgeline from Honda.
The truck is aimed at pickup buyers who want better fuel-economy and don’t need significant hauling capabilities. The company reportedly has goals of between 15,000 and 20,000 annual sales for the new truck.
The idea of a unibody, lifestyle-oriented truck was presaged by the Dodge Rampage concept seen at the 2006 Chicago auto show. It was based on the Chrysler minivan platform, and the concept even included van touches like sliding rear doors and the brand’s trademark Stow-N-Go seating.
How much will the TR Ram Life Style Truck cost? You’ll have to wait and see.
Chrysler would not comment on any new models coming to Windsor.
“As a matter of corporate policy, we don’t discuss future product,” said LouAnn Gosselin, head of communications at Chrysler Canada.
Ken Lewenza, president of the Canadian Auto Workers, said he has not heard of any talk about producing a “lifestyle” pickup in Windsor.
“I don’t remember any discussion about allocating a pickup truck to Windsor,” said Lewenza about talks of such a vehicle in recent rounds of contract negotiations.
But last week sources said Chrysler briefed major suppliers privately about its future production plans, including the new vehicle, in the design dome at the company’s world headquarters in Auburn Hills, Mich.