Get ready for an electric Ram pickup.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Mike Manley confirmed Oct. 28 that Ram will join the rush to produce an electric truck, an area that promises robust competition with Ford, General Motors, Tesla, Rivian and Lordstown Motors already planning to launch their own models.
Manley didn't provide any details, but his announcement during the company's third-quarter earnings conference call provided clarity to an area of intense speculation.
“I do see that there will be an electrified Ram pickup in the marketplace, and I would ask you just to stay tuned for a little while, and we’ll tell you exactly when that will be," Manley said in answering an analyst's question on the topic.
That statement highlights the pressure FCA is under to get an electric offering into the highly profitable pickup segment, an area crucial to the fortunes of the Detroit Three.
Just three months ago, Manley was less specific.
“Obviously, pickup trucks is a key franchise for us, and we’re not going to sit on the sideline if there is a danger that our position gets diluted going forward,” he said during the second-quarter earnings call.
The news from Manley came in the same week GM announced a more than $100,000 price tag for its GMC Hummer electric pickup. Ford recently said it would build a new plant to produce an electric F-150.
FCA, which long resisted an electrification push, has begun to aggressively tout its plans, which include a Jeep Wrangler 4xe plug-in electric hybrid.