Dodge Ram...Illegal?

Remember the Dodge PoweR Ram? The Dodge equivalent of the ForD Bronco, the Chevy Blazer/GMC Jimmy, y’know, the 2 door full-size SUVs.
Guess what. They still make them in Mexico.
Based on the current Dodge pick-up, with pick-up mechanicals and sheetmetal. Available with a 5.2 or 5.9 liter V8, 4 sp auto or 5 sp stick (oddly enough, no 4WD).
But its not legal for sale in the US.
Even if you went to Mexico to buy one, you’d have a hard time getting it through customs.
Anyone know why?

Do you know this, or are you guessing? Because my guess is the border patrol is only looking for three things coming from Mexico:

  1. Drugs
  2. Illegal aliens
  3. Drugs

I’ll bet your problem would come at licensing time in the US.

And I thought the reason was emissions related…?

I posted this question because of the confusing nature of what constitutes a truck.
A pick-up is a truck.
A van is a truck.
But an SUV, apparently, is a STATION WAGON!
As I understand it, these Rams roll off the same line as the Pick-ups, which ARE legal here. If it were a matter of Emissions, safety, or mileage, wouldnt, all full-size SUVs be illegal?

Just taking a WAG here, but I would assume it would be emissions and/or safety equipment related, just as some European makers can export some models to the U.S. but not others, and some models that are exported also have different “european” engines that cannot be exported, at least in the past… I am assuming that the same thing exists today.

You could still buy the old VW bug in Mexico, they made them far as I know there through the 80’s but you couldn’t bring it here cause of exhaust & smog rules.

"1) Drugs
2) Illegal aliens
3) Drugs "


1)Illegal drugs
2) aliens
3) Illegal drugs.

And trucks and cars have different rules regarding emissions, corporate fleet milage rules, safety standards, etc. At a guess, and without knowing, the SUV needs to meet some safety standard for autos that trucks don’t need to meet, and for monetary reasons, Daimler-Chrysler doesn’t want to remodel the SUV to make it legal here.
Why not ask Chrysler?

The only 2-door Dodge SUV sold in Mexico is the Dodge Ram Charger. And cross-checking against the US Dodge site proves that they don’t have it here, just the 4-door Durango.

Here’s a page about it that includes a relevant bit:

Assuming this is true, that’s only half the battle. Meeting the standards, and being certified to meet the standards are two completely different things. It’s not like the customs agents are going to check the emissions on your car when you bring it in – they just want to see the paperwork, and if Dodge doesn’t want to pay to create it, you’re out of luck.

AFAIK, C.A.F.E. standards are responsible. I believe Car and Driver did an article about the Mexican RamCharger a while back. It’s not available in the United States because it would drive down the average gas mileage of Chrysler’s product offerings, and thus subjexct the company to hefty penalties from the gub’mint. I think.

I think Elmwood (hey brother!) is right. I vaguely remember reading the same thing. For the earlier posters, I believe that SUV’s are indeed trucks. They are built on truck frames, have truck bodies, wheels, suspension, engines, gas mileage requirements, emissions levels and safety regs. The reason for the explosion of SUVs over the last decade is to allow the car makers deliver more power and size (which is what consumers want) without wrecking the EPA standards for gas mileage and emissions. This is the reason for the hue and cry to tighten standards for small trucks - it is not aimed specifically at pickups, but at the SUVs built on the pickup frames.

This is completely off the subject, but a friend of mine had a Dodge Ram years ago.

He always said the first word was a warning and the second was what would happen if you didn’t read the first. :smiley:

SUVs were on truck frames until 2000. At which point they were put on SUV frames.

Anyone Know the Dodge email adress? I can’t find it on the official website.