Pickup trucks battle over mpg

by Bradford Wernle and Mike Colias
Automotive News
July 2, 2012

Coming this fall: The pickup wars resume, with a twist.

Expect boastful claims of horsepower, torque, towing capacity and durability. But this year the Ford and Ram brands also plan to duke it out over fuel economy.

Over the past year, amid $4 a gallon gasoline, Ford Motor Co. has won pickup buyers with fuel-efficient F-series pickups powered by V6 engines.

Now Chrysler Group plans a direct assault on Ford’s claim to the high ground in fuel economy. When the re-engineered 2013 Ram 1500 arrives in showrooms this fall it will challenge Ford’s F-series, which got a new engine lineup in 2011, for the title of most fuel-efficient full-sized pickup.

The mpg fixation by two of the Detroit 3 is a stark departure from past strategies for attacking the pickup market. For decades, automakers squabbled over whose truck could haul more or last longer.

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