|Larry P. Vellequette covers Chrysler for Automotive News.|
I love puns, so when photos arrived of the big blue Pacific crashing against a floundering Ram heavy-duty pickup during a beach-photo-shoot-gone-wrong, my mind just raced.
"Guts. Gnarly. Ram."
"Ram 2500 --fathoms?"
"Finally, the perfect automotive camouflage: 200 million gallons of salt water."
What happened was considerably less funny for the Chrysler Group marketing team that was trying to shoot the Ram Power Wagon last week on -- or more accurately off -- a beach near Trinidad, Calif.
According to area nature photographer and witness Matt Hinton, who captured these photos (see gallery), the marketing folks apparently tried to shoot the Ram climbing some rocks at low tide. But the pickup became lodged on the escarpment and couldn't be freed before the angry sea returned.
"A rising tide lifts all boats. It also lifts pickups."
Talented tow truck operators finally plucked the floundering pickup from the sea and dragged it back to shore the next day. But not before an enterprising surfer stood atop the pickup amid the pounding surf. Some of Hinton's photos show what appears to be a separate wave system sloshing around in the back of the pickup bed.
"There are easier ways to export pickups to Asia than driving them there."
A spokesman for Ram sent us this matter-of-fact comment about the incident:
"During a photo shoot, a Ram truck was lodged on some rocks on a beach when the tide came in. The EPA inspected the vehicle and confirmed there was not any leakage from the vehicle's fluid tanks." Chrysler said it had received authorization and permits to be in all of the areas where the shoot occurred.
"I hope they bought the add-on rustproofing."
"Interesting design. Normally, the big inboard engine is in the stern."
OK, OK. I'm done now. Well, maybe one more:
"Hey look: They're bringing back the Pacifica."