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RAM ready to rumble: All-new 1500 days away from launch - but potent V6 diesel ruled out

You'll soon be able to get your hands on a new V8-powered ute in the form of the Ram 1500.

Look out Ford Ranger and Toyota HiLux - a new V8-powered pickup truck is just days away from launch, with the all-new Ram 1500 DT set to launch in before the end of January.

The new truck’s order books will open imminently, with the DT to sit above the existing DS model - the 1500 currently on sale in Australia - in the local line-up.

It’s arrival was expected to usher in a new era of diesel grunt, with international versions of the DT 1500 equipped with RAM’s third-gen EcoDiesel - a 3.0-litre diesel V6 - which produces 194kW and 650Nm, fed through an eight-speed automatic gearbox. The engine we currently get in Australia - the current diesel - produces 179kW and 569Nm.

CarsGuide tested the diesel engine in the USA, and we were blown away by its effortless torque and smooth operation.

But CarsGuide now understands the DT model will be a petrol-only affair, and one fitted with the brand's even more powerful 5.7-litre V8 petrol engine, generating 291kW and 556Nm.

The DT model will also welcome a major tech overhaul in the cabin, with select models to get a Head-Up Display, as well as a seriously cool 12.0-inch touchscreen arranged in a portrait style, elevating the Ram to among the most tech-friendly utes in the country.

As previously reported, the arrival of the DT gives RAM a two-prong strategy in Australia, as it seeks to steal sales from traditional utes like the Toyota HiLux, Ford Ranger, Nissan Navara and Isuzu D-Max.

The 1500's popularity shows no sign of abating in Australia, with some 3299 vehicles finding homes here in 2020.

Pricing is yet to be confirmed for the new Ram 1500, but CarsGuide has previously been told the new 1500 will sit above the current 1500 - now called the Classic - in terms of pricing and specification.

Ram 1500 pricing in Australia currently starts from around $80k, and stretches to around $110k. There is then a jump to the Ram 2500 Laramie, which starts at around $140k. It's this gap that Ram hopes to fill - at least partially - with the 1500 DT.