Spy Shots: 2019 Ram 1500 Testing Split Tailgate

December 20, 2017 by Ryan ZumMallen, @Zoomy575M

A dual-function split tailgate option may be coming to the 2019 Ram 1500.

The pickup truck, set to debut at the Detroit auto show in January, was spotted testing the new design near Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ headquarters in Auburn Hills, Mich. The tailgate is attached to an early prototype, indicating the feature has undergone extensive testing ahead of its reveal.

ram 1500 gate

2019 Ram 1500 prototype with a split tailgate. (Photo: Glenn Paulina/Trucks.com)

The 2019 Ram 1500 would be the first pickup truck to offer a split tailgate. It allows the gate of the truck to be opened in multiple ways.

The gate will lift up and down like any conventional pickup, but it will also swing out in a 60/40 split. Owners can then walk right up the end of the bed for easier access, loading and unloading. They can also climb inside without first stepping onto the folded gate.

It is unclear how the tailgate will operate. Spy photographs of the truck’s interior have shown a complicated key fob that could control the split tailgate function.

ram 1500 gate rendering

2019 Ram 1500 prototype with a split tailgate. (Photo: Glenn Paulina/Trucks.com)

The split tailgate will likely be offered as an optional feature on the 2019 Ram.

FCA also has tested an up-level trim of the 2019 Ram 1500 with a different front fascia design. This model boasts headlights that are surrounded by design accents and more integrated into the front grille. The grille itself is made of longer, uninterrupted horizontal slats. There are also integrated tow hooks.

ram 1500 new grille

(Photo: Glenn Paulina/Trucks.com)

The grille on the new design appears to cut into a section of the headlights that housed LED accents in previous spy shots. It may indicate these models use different lights.

The new look could belong to the Ram 1500 Limited or Laramie, two upscale model trims that are indicative of the demand for high-priced pickup trucks. The average transaction price of a full-size pickup rose more than 20 percent from 2012 to 2016, according to market research firm J.D. Power. In September, Ford Motor Co. unveiled a new Super Duty Limited trim that can approach prices of $100,000.

ram 1500 new grille angle

(Photo: Glenn Paulina/Trucks.com)

The new Ram is expected to feature numerous updates compared with its current model. In addition to the split tailgate and modern interior, the truck will take a new shape with chiseled styling. It has also abandoned the signature crosshair grille. New badging and eye-catching taillights bring a high-tech look to the truck.

Ram has also experimented with interesting combinations of parts for a future 1500 Rebel off-road truck.

Read Next: Trucks Lead Soaring Automotive Transaction Prices

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2 Responses

  1. Gregory Faulkner

    There are many professionally-written articles on the web mistakenly reporting that there are currently 3.0 V6 Ecodiesels being manufactured and sold in the U.S., and many of these writers also misinform as to the current mpg rating.

    The only ones currently allowed for sale are the Ram 1500s and Cherokees that had already been built in 2017 and before, but were/are still on dealer lots. When the emissions fiasco began, the EPA banned all sales of vehicles with those power trains, however, in late Summer 2017, the EPA allowed resumed sales of already-manufactured new vehicles, but only after FCA reconfigured the saftware, and this reconfiguration resulted in a lower mpg estimation, which, with respect to Ram, moves the rating down from it’s highest-mpg-configured truck at 21/29/24 to 20/27/23.

    So firstly, it is wrong to say that Ram has the highest mpg truck currently available, or at least making such a proclamation would require an asterisk, because it’s only remaining dealer stock that could be considered the 1/2- ton champ. Secondly, it is wrong to proclaim that any FCA vehicle will offer a 3.0 V6 Ecodiesel until this ongoing issue is resolved, and thirdly, if we simply consider 2018 model 1/2 ton pickups, F150 is currently 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 5th place with their 4 power trains with respect to mpg. In fact Ford’s 2.7 TT V6 Ecoboost not only beats all other half tons at this time, but also beats the smaller Tacoma and Frontier with their measly 4 cylinders, Honda’s Ridgeline V6, and ties the Colorado and Canyon 4 cylinder that has 125 fewer horses and 209 fewer peak ft- lb torque in a lesser truck.

    A turbo 4 cylinder in a half ton will obviously change Ford’s mpg dominance. A recertified diesel will as well. Itxs rumored that both FCA and GM will offer 4 banger turbos. Most likely only with a mild hybrid to bump up torque and FE even more. I like the concept personally, but hope that they’ll use larger displacement than 2.0 (as is with the Wrangler) and offer them also without hybrid assist as a cheaper option and then the hybrid version as an optional engine, but I don’t hold out much hope for a cheaper- optioned turbo 4.

    • Craig

      They have been cleared in the EPA “scandal” New 3.0L diesels are currently being sold right from the factory with 2018 model years.

      Obviously, you are a Ford or Chevy guy…


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