Ram Killing Off Popular 1500 EcoDiesel Ahead of EV Pickup Truck Debut
- Ram will end production of the 1500 EcoDiesel in January 2023, as the automaker looks toward electrification.
- The engine offered impressive range and fuel economy, as well as plenty of torque, making it a popular choice for towing.
- Ram plans to offer a battery-electric version of the 1500 in 2024, as Ford and Chevrolet roll out their own versions of electric pickups.
If you’ve had your eye on a new Ram 1500 EcoDiesel for a while, now might be the time to make plans to buy one. That’s because the EcoDiesel V6 will leave the Ram 1500 menu in January 2023, after almost 10 years of production, and after a moderate dose of controversy.
The turbocharged 3.0-liter EcoDiesel V6 arrived on the scene in 2014, offering class-leading range and fuel economy with a rating of up to 28 mpg on the highway, permitting it to travel over 1000 miles between fill ups. The engine also offered gobs of torque with 480 lb-ft on tap, as well as a towing capability of up to 12,560 pounds, making it a popular choice for long-distance hauling. The 2020 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel 4×2 later notched that fuel economy up to 32 mpg highway for RWD models and 29 mpg highway for 4×4 versions.
More importantly, it was billed by Ram as the “first modern half-ton, full-size pickup to offer durable, efficient diesel technology,” as other truck makers did not make an effort to field diesels in this particular segment.
Why is this engine option going away in 2023?
The most immediate answer reason given by the company is Ram’s electrification strategy, which will see a battery-electric Ram 1500 arrive in 2024.
“As we quickly pivot toward an electrified future, we wanted to celebrate this last EcoDiesel milestone by offering our loyal light-duty diesel enthusiasts a final opportunity to order the truck they love,” said Mike Koval Jr., Ram brand CEO.
The announcement of the 3.0-liter EcoDiesel’s departure comes a month after it was revealed that FCA was ordered to pay a $300 million penalty to the US government, composed of a $96.1 million fine and $203.6 million forfeiture, for versions of this engine used in 2014-16 Ram 1500 models and Jeep Grand Cherokees.
In announcing the fine, the EPA indicated that the conviction stemmed from the company’s conspiracy to defraud US customers and regulators through false and misleading statements about the engine’s emissions control system, among other aspects. While this penalty was aimed at a relatively narrow population of Ram 1500s and Grand Cherokees, spanning three model years and a total of 101,482 vehicles, the fallout over the similarly timed Volkswagen diesel crisis did some damage to diesel’s reputation.
Still, Ram’s EcoDiesel was able to weather this storm and retained its EPA approval in subsequent years, with the affected models receiving updates to make them emissions-compliant.
Ram will preview the 1500’s electric version later this fall, likely at the LA auto show or sooner, with the truck maker having already given the world a glimpse of its unique lighting pattern.
Should Ram have kept the 1500 EcoDiesel in production longer? Let us know in the comments below.