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Victoria Police has confirmed that it has purchased a small number of Ram 1500 pick-ups primarily for their towing capabilities, with more set to be on the way for law-enforcement departments across Australia.
Following on from an exclusive report by CarsGuide of a fully liveried Ram 1500 dual-cab spotted in inner-Melbourne late last month, Victoria Police has more clearly outlined the role the American full-size truck will play within the department.
“As part of the government funded Victoria Police Water Police vessel replacement program, Victoria Police acquired five RAM 1500 Express Quad Cab Utes,” according to Victoria Police Media Unit spokesperson Scout Rigoni.
“The vehicles will primarily be used by Water Police to tow the new 7.5-metre vessels. The first of the five vehicles arrived on 10 August, with the following four due in the coming months.”
Describing the Ram 1500 as “perfectly fit for purpose, fit for police duty”, Ram Trucks has revealed that the goal would be for Ram to corner the market in Australia, since the 1500’s 4500kg towing capacity is right up with the best available, and at a comparatively affordable price to boot.
“Ram Trucks Australia is delighted that Victoria Police have taken delivery of Ram 1500 Express full-size trucks to their fleet,” according to importer Ateco Australia Group PR consultant Oliver Peagam.
“Victoria Police, and other law enforcement agencies we are in discussions with, have strict criteria around the capability requirements of vehicles in their fleets, so it’s pleasing to see the Ram 1500 has met those requirements.”
It is understood that part of the reasoning behind the move towards full-size trucks for law-enforcement agencies is to lead the public by example. A 3500kg-rated mid-size pick-up may struggle with heavier loads – particularly if the truck and trailer are bowing down in the middle with the nose pointing upwards – compared to a 4500kg-rated full-size truck.
The Victoria Police isn’t the first to select Ram for water-vessel towing duties.
Earlier this year, the NSW Police Marine Command (PMC) acquired two Ram 1500 Crew Cab Truck to tow police jet skis and rigid inflatables to locations throughout the state, for search and rescue as well as crime prevention and detection activities.
Along with the 4.5-tonne maximum braked towing capacity, the NSW PMC went for the Ram because of its large interior that makes the instalment of specialised but at times bulky police equipment easy.
Powered by a 291kW/556Nm 5.7-litre Hemi V8 engine, the deal with Ram came about following the evaluation of multiple Ram models, including the larger 2500 series.
Mr Peagam is hopeful that the eastern seaboard law enforcements will be joined by other departments around Australia in due course.
“The Ram 1500s – alongside those already in active service with the NSW Police Marine Command – are already proving their worth across a range of duties,” he said, “…not least their ability to tow up to 4.5-tonnes.
“We look forward to growing our presence in these fleet segments with future announcements.”
As previously reported, the Ram 1500 sighted in Melbourne was the current DS-series 1500, though it is believed that the next-generation DT-series 1500 might also be on the table moving forward due to its improved safety and refinement capabilities.
Originating from Chrysler’s Warren, Michigan plant in the USA, the DS 1500 is the bestselling Ram Truck in Australia, where it is converted to right-hand drive at the company’s Melbourne manufacturing facility using 400 locally sourced remanufactured parts.
Prices for the 1500 Quad Cab kick off from $79,950 before on road costs, but of course that’s full retail, as opposed to an expected significant discount that the government authorities would receive.
Launched in mid-2018, the DS 1500 will be joined by the completely redesigned DT Ram 1500 early next year, but will remain as an entry-level truck with a comparatively lower price point – which would suit the various Australian law-enforcement agencies in negotiation for best-possible towing capacity down to the ground.