The Detroit Free Press is reporting that Fiat and Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne said the company is planning to expand its assembly plant in Mexico to produce the larger Ram commercial van, sold as the Fiat Ducato in Europe. Chrysler’s Saltillo assembly plant currently produces select Ram 1500 and Ram HD pickups.
“Hopefully it will become the center for production of light commercial vehicles in North America for us,” Marchionne said.
The front-wheel-drive commercial van, which will be based on the full-size Ducato, will be launched in 2013, Marchionne said. Fiat shares the platform with France’s PSA Peugeot Citron.
No comment was made as to whether this platform could support a pickup truck variant, but we hear the vehicles come off the line as chassis cab models and are then fitted with a shell as orders dictate. If the Saltillo plant works the same way, it would be quite easy produce a smallish, work-duty, unibody-platformed pickup truck.