The folks at Left Lane News have spied a Ram 1500 with an alleged four-cylinder under the hood. While there have been no substantial rumors that the next-generation Ram would gain a four-cylinder, new fuel economy standards are making a hard case for engine downsizing in pickup trucks.
From the photos it is clear that the engine under the hood of the mule features an inline block. In theory it could be an inline-six, but that’s highly unlikely given FCA’s success with the Pentastar V-6 engine. Judging the size of the engine versus the Ram hood compartment, it is safe to say it is likely an inline-four.
So what could it be? There’s good odds that the engine is FCA’s new 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder, which is known as the Hurricane. It is going to be the hallmark engine in the next-generation Jeep Wrangler and is expected to proliferate much of the FCA product portfolio over the next few years. Rumors suggest the mill will be capable of churning out upwards of 300 horsepower, which isn’t out of line from what we’ve come to expect from modern turbo four’s.
The other theory is that this is a test mule for some new hybrid powertrain system slated for Ram. FCA has suggested Ram will eventually gain some form of mild hybrid powertrain option, though details on it have been mostly nonexistent.
Nonetheless, it appears FCA is up to something here. The next-generation Ram is expected to be revealed at the 2018 Detroit Auto Show next January, where all the details will be firmed up.