Extending bold, tough, in-your-face Dodge Ram heritage to the Class 4 and 5 commercial market, Dodge expands its commercial presence and sets another commercial standard with the launch of the all-new 2008 Dodge Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs. Both chassis cabs were revealed today at the Chicago Auto Show.

"We built the all-new 2008 Dodge Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs for heavy-duty chassis cab buyers who want a powerful, capable and versatile commercial-quality vehicle," said George Murphy, Senior Vice President – Global Brand Marketing, Chrysler Group. "With commercial performance, durability and capability, the 2008 Dodge Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs offer dominant powertrain packages, a commercial-grade upfit-friendly chassis, and bold, ‘big-rig' Ram styling."

Delivering maximum uptime, the 2008 Dodge Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs are the ultimate chassis for the commercial customer looking for a dynamic, capable work-truck. Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs feature numerous class-leading attributes including largest standard fuel tank (52 gallons), largest brake rotors (390 mm), largest caliper pistons (66 mm) and best-in-class first-gear launch for optimum acceleration on vehicle take-off.

2008 Dodge Ram 4500

With industry-standard 34-inch frame rail spacing and flat, clean frame rails on a one-piece C-channel rear-frame rail (50,000-psi steel), upfit-friendliness is a primary theme of the Dodge Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs. Showcasing an unrivaled upfit-friendly design that reduces costs for body-builders and customers, all chassis components are below the frame surface assuring easy adaptability and versatility for virtually any upfit application. Offered in dual-rear-wheel models, four cab-axle lengths (60, 84, 108 and 120 inches) are available.

The all-new 2008 Dodge Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs offer leading commercial performance with a dominant powertrain package. The standard 6.7-liter Cummins High Output Turbo Diesel is loaded with 305 horsepower and 610 lb.-ft. of torque.

Bigger Commercial Presence Extends Dodge Truck Leadership

Expanding the Dodge Ram portfolio while building on Dodge's leadership position in the truck market, the all-new 2008 Dodge Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs conquer new territory as they charge into the Class 4 and 5 chassis cab segments creating a greater commercial presence for the Dodge brand.

"The commercial vehicle market is essentially white space for the Dodge brand," said Murphy. "We will continue to fill it with bold, powerful and capable vehicles."

The Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs will compete within the Class 4 and 5 segments with a gross vehicle weight range of 14,000 to 19,500 lbs. Overall industry forecasts for this range of chassis cab vehicles were 140,000 units in 2006 with growth expectations to 156,000 units by 2012. The Class 4-5 chassis cab segment is expecting further growth to 18 percent by 2015.

U.S. sales of Class 3-5 trucks grew 42 percent in 2005 to 261,627. Class 3-5 vehicles have a gross vehicle weight range between 10,001 lbs. to 19,500 lbs.

Targeted at small-business tradesmen, fleet customers and traditional chassis cab users, the Dodge Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs expand on a solid commercial foundation and lineup of full-size van, minivan and body-on-frame commercial vehicles joining the Dodge Ram 2500/3500 Box-Off models, Dodge Ram 3500 Chassis Cab, Dodge Sprinter, Dodge Ram pickup, and Dodge Caravan and Grand Caravan cargo vans in the Dodge commercial vehicle lineup.

Powertrain Options Ensure Powerhouse Performance

Dominant commercial performance is assured with the 2008 Dodge Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs as commercial customer specialty needs are met with superior capability, durability and performance.

"Delivering premium commercial performance, capability and durability, the all-new 2008 Dodge Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs offer the segment's most potent powertrain combinations in work trucks that get the job done," said Mike Donoughe, Vice President – Body-on-frame Product Team.

Maintaining its reign at the top of the heavy-duty diesel pickup segment, the standard Cummins engine generates 305 horsepower at 3,000 rpm and 610 lb.-ft. of torque at 1,600 rpm. The legendary engine also delivers superior fuel economy while ensuring durability and low cost of ownership for the commercial customer.

Providing superior trailer towing, acceleration, throttle response and drivability, the 6.7-liter engine is not only more powerful, it's also cleaner with B5 biodiesel compatibility and a reduction in particulates and nitrogen oxide (NOx) that comply with the 50-state 2007 heavy-duty emission standards. As durable as it is powerful, the Cummins 6.7-liter turbo-diesel engine also has life-to-major overhaul intervals of 350,000 miles.

Completing the dynamic powertrain package, the all-new 2008 Dodge Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs offer a six-speed automatic transmission with Power Take Off (PTO) capability or a six-speed manual transmission with PTO capability. An available electronic-shift transfer case is offered and a factory-installed exhaust brake contributes to both safety and superior brake life.

"Job Rated" Commercial-grade Chassis with Superior Suspension System The Dodge Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs lineup of 4x2, 4x4, dual-rear-wheel, regular and Quad Cab models are "Job-rated," meaning they are designed, engineered, tested and built to meet the rigid standards of commercial truck buyers.

Armed with Dodge Ram Heavy Duty's superior suspension system, beefed up even more for commercial applications, Dodge Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs provide expanded capability and durability with a commercial-grade chassis mated to a one-piece C-channel rear-frame rail (50,000 psi steel).

Two-wheel-drive and four-wheel-drive models feature a recirculating ball system that provides precise response and an on-center steering feel through lower internal friction. Improved power steering lines contribute to the delivery of precise feel and response for better handling. Featuring solid-beam front and rear axles, and a five-link, coil-spring front suspension with beam axle, a front and rear link-type sway bar and heavy-duty tubular shock absorbers are standard.

The rear suspension on two- and four-wheel-drive models is equipped with leaf springs and includes standard two-stage springs as part of the spring design for greater load-carrying capability.

Four cab-axle lengths (60, 84, 108 and 120 inches) are available. Maximum Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) for 4500 models is 16,500. For 5500 models, the maximum GVWR is 19,500 lbs. The Gross Combined Weight Rating (GCWR) for both 4500 and 5500 models is 26,000 lbs.

The standard diesel exhaust brake system, together with class-leading brakes and pistons, provides extended brake life and increased driver control while contributing to enhanced safety performance. Standard four-wheel disc brakes with anti-lock braking system (ABS) ensure superior safety and crash-avoidance capability.

Unmatched Versatility and Upfit-Friendliness

Meeting all cab-axle and industry upfitter specifications, the 2008 Dodge Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs bring unmatched versatility and upfit-friendliness with an enhanced commercial-grade, user-friendly chassis to the Class 4 and 5 chassis segments. Flat, "clean" frame rails with industry-standard 34-inch frame rail spacing provide versatility for virtually any upfit application. All chassis components are below the frame surface to facilitate after-market upfits or retrofits.

Bolt-on and riveted-on exhaust hanger brackets provide increased upfitter flexibility, and riveted cross-members behind the cab allow for easier modification. The one-piece C-channel frame, shear plate or u-bolt access along the length of the frame, and shear plate mounting locations identified along the frame contribute to the Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs' upfitter friendliness.

The fuel filler is routed through the frame and an optional mid-ship fuel tank frees up more space behind the rear axle for special upfit applications. Fuel and brake lines are routed together on the frame's left side to make better use of space along the frame, which also has clearance for rear-exhaust routing.

Electrical connections are user-friendly thanks to three-fused battery feeds routed into the cab and on to the rear of the chassis. A high-current 50-amp ground stud is located at the rear of the frame. Upfitter wire circuits and electrical schematics are identified in the body builder guide.

Together, these unique upfit-friendly enhancements provide a streamline assembly process that reduces costs for upfitters, second-stage manufacturers and customers.

Bold, Tough, Dodge Design Conveying commercial power and vigor, along with instantly recognizable, unmistakable bold Ram styling and design, the all-new 2008 Dodge Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs stand out in the Class 4-5 chassis cab segments.

Robust and loaded with a "big-truck" look and feel, its enormous crosshair grille and large headlamps are the dominant focal point of a vehicle that retains the most recognizable design signature of any mid-size truck on the market.

Reinforced by an equally bold hood and fender combination, the dynamic front appearance is anchored by twin, large 7- x 10-inch trailer tow mirrors as standard. Beneath each fender are 19.5-inch wheels. The Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs are available in three trim lines: ST, SLT and Laramie.

Comfortable and Convenient Interiors

The 2008 Dodge Ram 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cabs successfully blend full-size interior comfort with commercial convenience. Showcasing an easy-to-navigate instrument panel cluster, the user-friendly wide center stack contains air conditioning, heating, ventilation and audio system controls. Comfortable, oversized seats, including available bucket seats with leather trim, provide relaxing support while adding both a rich appearance and upscale atmosphere to a commercial truck.

Quad Cab models provide seating for six passengers and are equipped with four standard doors and 60/40 folding rear seats. Demonstrating interior functionality and capability, seat cushions fold up to create a tall storage area from floor to ceiling. An optional floor section under the back seat folds open to form a flat-load floor with additional storage in each of the foot wells.

Delivering just as much versatility and flexibility, regular cab models provide generous storage behind the seat and allow for considerable travel use and ease in reclining for both driver and passengers.