Even in a down pickup truck market, the all-new Dodge Ram should be a boon to Chrysler and not just because it's a far better truck than the one it replaces. The new Ram will also be the next Nissan Titan, a deal that helps Chrysler keep its truck factories running closer to maximum capacity. With Nissan borrowing Ram mechanicals and engineering, the assumption has been that Chrysler's 5.7L HEMI V8 was going to be part of the package. Nissan officials have continually denied that any decision about the truck's engine of choice has yet to be made and that its own Evolution 5.6L powerplant was still under consideration.
Chrysler chairman Jim Press put any speculation to rest when he declared at an LA Motor Guild meeting recently that the Nissan Titan would indeed receive HEMI power. After our friend Mike Levine from Pickuptrucks.com broke the news, Nissan responded by saying that it has made no decisions concerning the HEMI engine and when it does, the announcement would come from Nissan. It makes sense that the next Titan would be HEMI-fied, especially considering that the engineering needed to mate the HEMI and Ram platform has already been done and paid for, and part logistics are already in sync with truck assembly. Plus, the new HEMI produces a class-leading 390 horsepower and gets decent fuel economy for a big, burly truck engine. Nissan could do much worse.