This German-Tuned Ram 1500 Goes 1,250 Miles On A Tank Of LPG
JB Car Design - a German tuning outfit better known for its exquisitely executed tuned Porsche, Ferrari, and Lamborghini models - is taking a stab at that most American of vehicles: the pickup truck. Specifically, the outfit on Tuesday announced its rugged, rust-proof take on the Ram 1500, and it's like nothing we've seen before.
That's because, where many firms are content to essentially fit an intake, raise the ride height, and bolt on some trinkets before calling it a day, JB Car Design seems to be spending tremendous time and effort getting the rust-proofing just right. Each Ram 1500 they build will literally be disassembled from the frame so that the cabin and bed can be hand-treated with protective coatings and cavity sealing, in the hopes that they'll stay whole at least as long as their engines do.
Given that the Germans all but invented rust-proofing, we'd trust them to get it right.
Under the hood, JB is taking a different tack, too, furnishing each 5.7L Hemi V8 with the necessary stuff to run Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) - a.k.a. propane - instead of gasoline. The result isn't much more potent, cranking out 428 hp to the Hemi's stock 395, but it is kinder to the environment. JB Car Design says the Ram achieves reductions of about 50% in hydrocarbon emissions, 85% in nitrogen oxide, and 95% in soot.
Propane, it should be noted, is significantly cheaper than gasoline in Europe, so the fact the truck only manages around 16 miles per gallon isn't an issue.
And then there's the driving range, which JB says is more than 2,000 km - about 1,250 miles - thanks to a pair of tanks with a total combined capacity of 352 liters, or about 93 gallons. If the tank were any bigger, there would be very little truck left.
Of course, JB Car Design's tuned Ram 1500 offers plenty of the more traditional tuner truck stuff, too - things like a modified grille, a custom hood with conspicuous black vents, an engine skid plate, and big 10-inch wide wheels wrapped in 33-inch-diameter off-road tires. On the roof, the truck can be optioned with a curved LED work light to match an available custom steel cage over the bed.
Now, we've got bad news and worse news. The bad news is: JB Car Design's Limited Edition Ram 1500 is priced at about €120,000 - roughly $134,000 US, at the current exchange rate. Worse, even if you have both the money and the desire to buy one, if you live in the US, you probably can't.