IT’S BILLED AS the ‘most powerful mass-produced truck in the world’ and we’re not about to argue. The Ram 1500 TRX packs much the same maniacal 6.2-litre supercharged V8 hemi lump seen in the Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk, which results in 523kW and 881Nm going to all four wheels.
Power is deployed via a familiar ZF 8HP95 eight-speed automatic, and Ram claims its big bruiser will hit 100km/h in just 4.5 seconds and run a 12.9sec quarter. In addition to wicking up the grunt, Ram has clearly put a lot of effort into making sure the T-Rex, as it’s known internally, isn’t some malevolent ditch-seeking missile.
For a start, its footprint is radically different to the rest of the Ram 1500 line-up. A 150mm widening of both front and rear tracks means that the TRX wears stretched composite guards to accommodate the monster 325/65 R18 Goodyear Wrangler Territory all-terrain tyres.
Who wants the most powerful mass produced truck in the world? We do!
It’s certainly not leaf springs and drum brakes underneath, either. The rear end takes inspiration from the Raptor, with a five-link coil system and adaptive dampers for 40 percent more rear wheel travel compared to cooking Ram 1500s. A low-range gearbox and Dana 60 rear axle augments its off-road credentials, as does ground clearance of 300mm and a fording depth of 813mm. Those looking to tow will welcome the 3674kg capacity, although the 594kg payload is modest. There’s even a Baja drive mode and launch control.
And yes, Wheels understands that it is likely to come to Australia, sitting atop a range that will descend through the new DT Laramie and then existing DS versions of Warlock, Laramie and Express. Like these trucks, only left-hand-drive models will be built ex-works, so the TRX will have to go through the same factory-authorised right-hand-drive re-engineering process as other Ram trucks, where Walkinshaw is contracted by ATECO to perform the work. This looks likely to lift TRX prices towards $200,000.
RHD ’VETTE INCOMING!
FROM THE ASHES
JUST AS HSV bites the dust, General Motors Special Vehicles materialises. Operating from Q4 of 2020, the business will be run locally by 20-year Holden veteran Joanne Stogiannis and will employ around 150 staff. GMSV will continue to partner with Walkinshaw with a range initially comprising Chevrolet Silverado variants, with right-hook Corvette C8 models due in 2021. Longer term? Wheels has heard rumours that RHD Cadillac sedans and Chevy Tahoe and Suburban SUVs are all up for consideration.