Ram today will unveil a concept 2015 Ram 1500 pickup at the Dallas auto show to honor the Texas Rangers -- the historic law-enforcement agency that once brought order to the Lone Star state’s rough-and-tumble frontier.
The concept pickup features unique exterior badging and bright work festooned with the Ranger’s star-and-wheel design. The pickup is white with silver trim, to evoke the lawmen’s white hats and bright silver badges.
Inside the cabin, the Texas Ranger theme is ubiquitous, from special home screens and backgrounds on the 7-inch instrument cluster display and 8.4-inch infotainment system to an embedded star-and-wheel badge on the leather center storage console cover. The agency’s emblem is also embossed into the canyon brown and tan leather seats.
The crew cab’s four doors feature wooden accents made from walnut, the wood traditionally used in rifle stocks, as is a sliding cover for the smaller center stack storage bin. Other trim work is done in galvanized metal, a material common throughout rural Texas.
Embedded into the doors’ walnut accents are four real five peso Mexican silver coins -- the coins used as the basis for the original Rangers’ badge. Notably, the coins head side is embedded into the two front doors, and the tails side displayed into the two rear doors.
Within the center stack console is a locking steel box that can be used as secure storage for a handgun, ammunition or other valuables.
The Texas Rangers concept is the third new half-ton trim level shown by Ram so far in 2015. The brand showed a Ram Rebel off-road concept at the Detroit auto show, and revealed a new look for its Ram Laramie Limited top trim at the Chicago auto show. The brand -- and Fiat Chrysler -- doesn’t have a press conference or reveal scheduled for next week’s New York auto show, but chose instead to reveal the Ranger concept in Dallas.
Texas is key
The Texas market is strategic to the Detroit 3 automakers and is by far the No. 1 pickup truck state by volume. In 2014, new pickup truck registrations in Texas grew 8.4 percent to 348,679 units, according to IHS data. The next closest state in pickup registrations was California with 159,613 units, according to IHS.