Fiat Chrysler’s timing when it comes to big, beefy vehicles is amazing with the latest example occurring earlier today.
The company’s Ram brand received good news with its new 1500 TRX model being named one of three finalists for the 2021 North American Truck of the Year just as the first Launch Edition model, sporting VIN No. 1, rolled off the line at its Sterling Heights (MI) Assembly Plant, or SHAP.
SHAP’s an appropriate place to produce a pickup truck with a 6.2-liter supercharged Hemi V-8 engine putting out 702 horsepower and 650 pound-feet of torque — it used to produce missiles for the U.S. Army.
Given that the TRX hauls from 0 to 60 mph in just 4.5 seconds, completes the quarter mile in 12.9 seconds officially and has a top speed of 118 mph, SHAP is the perfect place for its birth. It should also be noted that in TheDetroitBureau.com’s review of the TRX earlier this week, we were told the truck is actually faster than those numbers.
“We’re ecstatic to announce the start of production of the award-winning, all-new 2021 Ram 1500 TRX,” said Mike Koval Jr., head of Ram Brand, in a statement. “The Ram 1500 TRX bolsters the brand’s strong history of high-performance trucks while expanding Ram’s light-duty lineup with the segment’s best combination of performance, capability, luxury and technology.
“We are also well aware that Ram 1500 TRX Launch Edition VIN #001 will be an instant collectible truck that is sure to excite enthusiasts, so we plan to make it available via auction with all proceeds going to charity. We look forward to providing further details about the auction and how potential buyers can bid on this very special Ram truck early next year.”
The truck’s debut on the plant floor coincided with the announcement it was a NACTOY finalist, competing against the 2021 Ford F-150 and its FCA sibling, the new Jeep Gladiator Mojave. The Gladiator captured the award last year and after a revamp to make the Mojave an off-road warrior, it’s back in the running again.
The first model is the Launch Edition, of which there will be just 702 built, exclusive Anvil Gray paint, and inside, each truck features a special red and brushed-aluminum center console badge identifying it as a limited-edition Ram 1500 TRX Launch Edition model.
In addition to the exclusive color and other signifying touches, the Launch Edition package is coupled with the TRX Level 2 Equipment Group, adding carbon fiber interior trim, color accent package, head-up display, beadlock-capable wheels, 19-speaker Harman Kardon premium sound system, dual-pane panoramic sunroof, Advanced Safety Group, and hood and bodyside graphics. FCA officials said it sold out of the model in less than three hours.
The new TRX is one of the many products coming of the SHAP floor after FCA invested nearly $1.5 billion to retool the plant specifically for the next-generation Ram 1500. The all-new truck officially launched in March 2018, and the plant employs 7,200 people.