TRX lives on beyond Dodge Hellcats, no turbo-4 for Ram pickups

The TRX isn’t going to die out and you won’t find a turbo-4 under the hood of a Ram pickup any time soon.

During an extensive interview with Motor Authority at the New York Auto Show 2022Aries CEO Mike Koval, Jr. had a lot to say about the brand’s future product and powertrains.

2022 Ram 1500 TRX Ignition Edition

TRX is not going to die out

Koval didn’t mince words. “No,” was the short, blunt, and straight answer given when asked if the TRX dies after the 2023 model year, as Dodge CEO Tim Kunskis told MA the Hellcat twins as we know them will disappear.

The current plan, according to Koval, requires the TRX not only to exist beyond 2023, but also in its current form. The director wouldn’t reveal why the TRX will live on when the Hellcats go extinct. At that point, it will theoretically become the only vehicle with the supercharged 6.2-liter Hellcat V-8, as the Charger and Challenger model Hellcats will fade after 2023, and the Jeep Trackhawk and Dodge Durango Hellcat are already gone.

Either the TRX will continue because emissions regulations are more tolerant of pickups, or Koval was coy about what “its current shape” meant. It could mean that it continues as a fast desert runner, but with a different powertrain.

Head of Jeep brand Jim Morrison told MA on the show that the Grand Cherokee Trackhawk, which had Hellcat power in its last generation, may not return. And while performance Grand Cherokees are far from dead, they won’t be powered by a V-8. Stellantis will the new turbocharged inline-6 announced with the long wheelbase Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer. In standard trim, this engine produces 420 hp and 486 lb-ft of torque, while a high-horsepower version is rated at 510 hp and 500 lb-ft. The addition of an electric motor to the 8-speed automatic transmission could potentially boost powertrain output to more than 700 horsepower without increasing engine output, Jeep engineers said. MA there is still room left to increase the power in the engine itself. Can the TRX be electrified with or without a plug?

Ram 1500 electric teaser expected in 2024

Ram 1500 electric teaser expected in 2024

Range extender and electric models are coming, no turbo-4 engines

Koval reaffirmed that Ram will offer an extended-range gas model in addition to the electric Ram pickup, which will arrive in 2024. The executive would not detail the latter’s powertrain.

According to Koval, the extended-range Ram will have “everything a BEV (the electric Ram) does, but more,” in terms of capacity and, more importantly, range. Range is a major customer concern and the range extender aims to address that, particularly when towing or hauling a load. The management does not want to confirm whether the range-extended truck and the electric truck will run on the latter frame version of the STLA chassiswill share platforms or, if the extended range model, will be based on the gas truck.

When asked if product plans require a Ram pickup to have a turbo-4 under the hood, Koval said no. That means the Aries is not a powertrain like the one in the Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xemaking 375 horsepower and 470 lb-ft of torque, better than the available 5.7-liter V-8.

The electric Ram 1500 in the making which will be shown later this year will be known as the Vision Truck. It gives a taste of the electric truck. According to Koval, the design of the production truck has not yet been established or finalized.

Electrification in the Ram lineup will extend beyond the light segment. Koval said the heavy-duty segment will be electrified. First he said it will likely take place in the 2030s, then he noted that he expects that timeline to be dramatically pulled forward. Koval believes that hydrogen fuel cells could be an interesting solution for buyers of heavy-duty vehicles and chassis cabs, noting that the automaker is keeping a close eye on it, but nothing has been decided as of yet.

Finally, when asked if there is a firm end date for the internal combustion engine at Ram Koval, he responded quickly with a one-word answer. “No.”

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