SCORE Journal Issue 8 - 2015

SCORE Journal - The Official Publication of SCORE Off-Road Racing

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Page 88 of 99

W hen Dodge came out with its Ram Rebel off-road pickup, truck enthusiasts quickly imagined a vehicle like the Mopar Ram Runner, built by Baja Champion and KORE Performance owner, Kent Kroeker. While many Dodge purists were initially disappointed that the Ram Rebel was nothing like the Raptor eating, street- worthy Trophy Truck that they imagined, many were surprised to realize that the truck was well-suited for real-world driving, with excellent off-road capabilities that can make the Ram Rebel a great pickup for work, recreation, customizing, and towing a trailer to haul the family's UTVs. "This is not a vehicle to compete with an extreme off- road pickup," says Nick Cappa, Ram Truck Media Relations at the Chrysler Group LLC. "It's somewhere between that and what we offer for the outdoorsman." When you take the Ram Rebel's features and compare them to other trucks in this category, the Rebel is much more than other off- road branded vehicles that have nothing more than aftermarket shocks and a decal on the bedsides. One of the best features of the Ram Rebel is its suspension system. Not only is the truck one-inch higher than the factory Dodge Ram, it also incorporates the company's air suspension, that has been refined since its first introduction onto the 2013 Grand Cherokee."The air suspension has various ride settings," says Cappa. "But to make it full-proof, it's limited to what you can do, and it works off of the speed that the vehicle is traveling. It keeps the calibrations in-line for what the truck is doing. Most customers notice or use the auto leveling. This works great for towing, as it automatically levels out the truck." With the suspension at full- extension, the Ram Rebel has an impressive approach angle of 2.53 degrees. When combined with tuned Bilstein shocks, a softer rear anti-roll bar and steering that is more responsive to off-road conditions (slower ratio), the Ram Rebel can offer some impressive off-road capabilities that enthusiasts and outdoorsman will love. Outfitted with 33-inch diameter Toyo Open Country A/T tires, the Ram Rebel has the bite to take on difficult terrain but also has an easy-going temperament for a smooth and quiet ride when you need to take it on the highway. "The engineering teams took advantage of what the design crew wanted to do in order to help update the ability of the truck," said Cappa. "From the calibration, to shocks and tuning, it was important to get everything correct, even with the stability control. it all had to be adjusted for this truck." Although equipped with a capable and adaptable suspension system, it was the exterior of the truck that had to really make a statement for those looking at it for the first time. "The sport hood, cool lights, grille, even its own paint codes, wheels and tires, are all specific to the truck," says Cappa. This includes a large blacked-out grille with the RAM lettering across the center. The same lettering is also big and bold on the truck's tailgate. A steel skid plate rises from beneath the truck to the top of the bumper, adding some protection when the road gets tough. The Dodge Challenger "like" hood with scoops adds a performance touch that is distinctively Dodge, and wide fender flares from the Powerwagon make the Ram Rebel look rather intimidating and purposeful. 089 SCORE JOURNAL

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