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SEMA

Now here's something we didn't expect at SEMA, or anywhere for that matter: a slammed FedEx delivery truck. Yes, what you're looking at is an actual FedEx delivery truck lowered to the ground that the shipping company commissioned Mobsteel to build.

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A few years ago, the trend in half-ton pickup trucks was ultra-luxurious trims, often with the words "limited" or "platinum" tacked on after the model name. That was well and good, but we like this latest fad a lot more - diesel engines. First, Ram came to bat with a 3.0-liter, V6 turbodiesel for the 1500, then Nissan announced that the next-generation Titan would be getting an eight-cylinder Cummins diesel.

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When Bloomberg spoke to Toyota USA Sales CEO Kazua Ohara recently, we highlighted his comments on the possible return of the Toyota Supra. However, the interview started with Ohara discussing the Tundra, and how it would take time to pinpoint and hone the pickup truck's brand image in the minds of consumers. That effort could get a boost, with a report in Edmunds saying that Toyota is "evaluating" the addition of a Cummins turbodiesel to the Tundra's engine options.

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Ram has used Cummins engines in its heavy duty trucks since 1989, and it is the only pickup truck brand to use products from the Indiana-based engine maker. With the announcement that the next Nissan Titan will also use a Cummins powerplant, and a Nissan spokesman having already said "We will definitely leverage the Cummins brand name," a piece in Automotive News wonders whether the deal will affect the way Ram markets its tie-up with Cummins.

Official

Toyota might be content to eke out an existence in the fullsize pickup market with its lightly refreshed Tundra, but Nissan looks like it'll be a bit more aggressive with its next-generation Titan. The next Titan will make use of a 5.0-liter, turbodiesel V8 from Cummins, the Japanese company announced at the start of its Nissan 360 industry showcase.

Motorsports

While it may not be touting the old "Win on Sunday, sell on Monday" axiom we all know and love, Mazda recognizes that racing can only improve its cars. And so it's no surprise that the Japanese automaker is testing and refining its Skyactiv-D diesel engine by sending it out on various race tracks around the country – notably being the first diesel ever to compete at Daytona and the first to notch a Grand Am win at Road Atlanta.

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The Dodge Li'l Red Express is one awesome quandary of the late '70s. Back then, Dodge had taken to building all sorts of oddball trucks and vans with strange equipment packages, but the Li'l Red Express was something entirely different.

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Cummins and Peterbilt have created a new demonstration tractor trailer that boasts a 54-percent increase in fuel economy over current trucks. This particular Class 8 Peterbilt 587 uses a high-efficiency Cummins ISX15 engine and managed to average 9.9 miles per gallon over 11 runs over the 312-mile route between Fort Worth and Vernon, TX with a gross combined weight of 65,000 pounds. For comparison's sake, most modern trucks manage between 5.5 and 6.5 mpg. For most long-haul truck drivers, an inc

Video

Some of the fastest and most expensive cars in the world roll through Jay Leno's Garage – we're pretty sure this fits mostly in the latter category. Army General Dennis Via brought the US government's new Fuel Efficient Ground Vehicle Demonstrator prototype troop transporter for Leno to check out and take for a spin. We're sure there were more than a few surprised residents and motorists in the LA area when Leno took the massive FED out for a late-night test drive.

Video

They say "idle hands are the devil's playground," but said playgrounds grow to Disney-sized proportions when a pair of jacked-up trucks, two egos, a chain and an empty mall parking lot are involved. Proof of this is the video below, which shows a Cummins-powered Dodge Ram circa 2006 to 2008 chained tail-to-tail with what looks to be a gasoline-powered Chevrolet Silverado from the late 1990s or early 2000s.

Official

Ahead of a new Ram Heavy Duty that will debut sometime next year (check out the spy shots below), Chrysler and Cummins are celebrating a milestone in a 24-year partnership that has supplied the Ram pickup with diesel engines.

SEMA

ICON has rolled out a slew of official photos of its D200 Pickup headed for this year's SEMA show. Built with some help from the diesel-fiends at Banks Power, this 1965 Dodge D200 Crew Cab uses a modern Dodge 3500 chassis. That means there's a 5.9-liter Cummins inline-six thrashing around under the hood, good for 975 pound-feet of torque. Much of that twist comes from the Banks toy box, including tricks like a Six-Gun Diesel Tuner, Banks iQ Man-Machine Interface, a Monster Ram Intake Manifold an

Official

Auto enthusiasts often point to the pony car wars as the last bastion of one-upsmanship among Detroit's automakers, but the truth is, the pickup wars are every bit as competitive – if not more so. Auburn Hills keeps a ready eye on what their rivals in Dearborn and Detroit are doing, and vice-versa. Today, that battle is renewed with the introduction of Ram's 2013 Heavy Duty and Chassis Cab lines at the State Fair of Texas. Why a state fair? The Banner State is the perfect battleground for

Spy Shots

Our spy photographers have managed to lay their lenses on the 2014 Ram HD family ahead of the truck's launch next year. From the looks of things, designers have graced the pickups with a new grille and projector headlamp arrays as well as LED taillamps. It's unclear whether the upgraded rear light arrays well be standard equipment or optional as on the 2013 Ram 1500.

Ram is going for broke with its 2012 truck range, increasing power in both the 5.7-liter Hemi and 6.7 Cummins diesel. The gas V8 gets a bump to 383 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque. The 6.7-liter Cummins diesel inline six now pushes 350 horses backed by 800 lb.-ft. of torque.

Cummins, Inc., producers of powertrains for automotive, marine and farming applications - and virtually everything in between - has been awarded a $6,971,182 no-fee contract by the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) to cover its cost of researching and developing efficient powertrain technologies for use in military applications. Under terms of the contract, the DoD has asked Cummins to:

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