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Chrysler Announces 2014 Ram ProMaster Full-Size Commercial Van

12/5/2012
When U.S. consumers think of the word "fiat," they likely either conjure images of small Italian cars or are reminded of government leaders making grand, sweeping decrees. Big, full-size vans are unlikely to be on the list. Enter the Fiat Ducato, a large commercial cargo and passenger van sold in Europe and other regions. It is heading to the United States as the 2014 Ram ProMaster, and will be equipped with revised styling and other modifications for U.S. van buyers.

"The Ram ProMaster further strengthens our commercial lineup, offering a full line of work trucks and vans," said Fred Diaz, president and CEO--Ram Truck Brand and Chrysler de Mexico, Chrysler Group LLC. "We feel that from a product feature and launch timing standpoint, the all-new Ram ProMaster van is going to be a home run with commercial customers."

The Fiat Ducato is offered with a standard or extended wheelbase and two roof heights. In overseas markets, the van is equipped with a 2.3-liter diesel engine and a choice between a 6-speed manual and a 6-speed automatic transmission, and can carry up to a 4,429-pound payload. The engine is rated to deliver up to 148 horsepower and 258 lb.-ft. of torque. It is possible that the Ram ProMaster will offer a larger and more powerful engine to North American customers.

The new van goes on sale at the end of 2013, and will compete for business budgets against an expected new Ford Transit full-size van, the stalwart Chevrolet Express, GMC Savana, and the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter. Ironically, Dodge dealers once sold a version of the Sprinter equipped with a crosshair-grille design, before Daimler-Benz AG divested itself of Chrysler.

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