Chrysler has begun rolling the first Ram 2500 Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) pickup trucks off its production line at the Group’s Saltillo Truck Assembly Plant. The start of Ram CNG production is timed to support the Company’s announcement that the formerly fleet-only vehicle will now be available to retail customers.
“We felt there was a strong likelihood that customer demand would allow us to offer the Ram 2500 CNG to retail as well as fleet buyers,” said Fred Diaz, President and CEO, Ram Truck Brand and Chrysler de Mexico, Chrysler Group LLC. “From the moment we unveiled the Ram CNG, dealers – particularly those near CNG refueling infrastructure — strongly encouraged us to bring CNG to their stores. We’re pleased that today Ram can deliver on that demand.”
The 2012 Ram 2500 CNG is the only OEM-built compressed natural gas-powered pickup truck in North America.
It is actually a bi-fuel vehicle that uses compressed natural gas as its primary fuel source, but automatically switches to gasoline when the CNG tanks are emptied. In use, the Ram CNG transitions from one fuel to the other with little discernible difference in operation or capability.
CNG-powered trucks offer cost and emissions benefits, using an abundant, domestically sourced fuel, which reduces America’s dependence on foreign oil. CNG lessens the environmental impact of greenhouse gas and reduces smog-producing pollutants up to 90 percent.
In vehicles, CNG achieves nearly identical mileage figures as unleaded regular gasoline – with a retail cost more than 30 percent lower than the average price of a gallon of gasoline.
(This article compiled using information from a Chrysler Group LLC press release)