Could Peugeot be the source for a new Ram Dakota?
With PSA joining with FCA, much of the discussion has been on possible products for the US brands, mostly focused on Chrysler’s thin lineup.
But there’s another possible product for a North American brand – the Peugeot Landtrek, a surprisingly capable pickup developed with a Chinese partner. What if this could become the basis for a new Dakota? This would give Ram an entry in the rapidly growing midsize truck market. Of course, the Dakota name is a holdover from when pickups were still under the Dodge brand, except for 2011 when Dakota was part of the Ram lineup.
You may not fully appreciate the beauty of the front of this rendering if you haven’t seen how Peugeot sells it (below).
Our resident artist has taken the Landtrek and added styling cues more appropriate for a Ram truck. PSA offers the Landtrek with the currently popular four-door cab as well as a regular cab pickup and a chassis cab. Years ago, Dodge Dakota dabbled in the chassis cab market, but few were sold.
Would a Landtrek based Dakota be up to the task? The 4 door Landtrek is about an inch shorter than the Ford Ranger. Available payload is greater than Ranger’s. Currently the Landtrek is powered by a 2.4 turbo or a diesel; it’s likely American buyers would want better performance then the 2.4 turbo provides.
The problem with the Landtrek, aside from looks—which our render artist showed could be overcome—is the fact that it was created for third world countries, which means it’s probably lacking the safety structure and amenities needed for North America. The cost of bringing it up to code, so to speak, could make the project impractical.
On the other hand, today, the Ram 1200 (a Mitsubishi under the badges) sells in all sorts of places outside the United States and Canada, including Mexico. The Peugeot would probably fit the bill in most of those places. As Ram pursues a global aura as an upscale, capable commercial vehicle brand, perhaps PSA will end up selling both Landtreks, as shown above, and higher-trim, facelifted Dakotas.
- Towing capacity: 7,700 pounds
- Length: 209 or 213 inches (209 inches for four-door shortbed)
- Payload: 2,200 to 2,646 pounds based on cab, engine, RWD vs 4×4
- Drive: RWD or 4×4 (23.6 inches of water-crossing with 4×4)
- 210 hp, 236 lb-ft (turbo 2.4 gasoline engine)
- Six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission
- 0-62 mph: 11.2 to 13 seconds (gasoline engine)
- 23 mpg, combined, RWD; 21 4×4 (estimates based on EU figures)