Throw a Hellcat engine in a Ram, and things get interesting.
Ram already upended the pickup race by using a mix of luxury and capability to outsell the Chevrolet Silverado for the first time last year. Now the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles brand has a chance to set a new standard for performance in the pickup space with the Ram 1500 Rebel TRX, which is expected to give consumers major punch right from the factory with 707 hp.
If rumors of a Hellcat-equipped TRX hold true, that level of output would leapfrog the 450-hp Ford F-150 Raptor and make the competition for bragging rights in the pickup world even more intense. FCA has teased the idea for years, and a Rebel TRX spotted in camouflage signals that the Raptor is about to get new competition.
Ram introduced the Rebel TRX concept during the State Fair of Texas in 2016. FCA said the concept "has an exterior design that radiates focused aggression." That model was powered by a 6.2-liter Hemi V-8 delivering 575 hp.
The TRX could potentially go on sale later this year.
"There's a redesigned F-150 right around the corner, and I wouldn't be surprised if Ford comes out with something to answer FCA on this," said Kelsey Mays, Cars.com's senior consumer affairs editor.
"There's a lot you can do with forced induction, with supercharging and turbocharging engines," Mays said. "You can really get a lot more power out of an existing engine. Ford's got a lot in its wheelhouse. Certainly, we're seeing that right now on Mustang."