Driven: Icon 1965 Dodge D200 Power Wagon

3 Icon D200 front II
 

By Matt Stone, photos courtesy Icon 4x4

Crave the ultimate crew cab?

Imagine a mid-1960s crew cab Dodge packing all the power, chassis sophistication and comfort of a modern Ram 2500 4x4, but built with quality and technology exceeding that of the world's most expensive show rods and factory concept cars with a look that respects the ethos and period of the original design. That loosely describes an Icon Dodge truck.

Icon founder Jonathan Ward's background is in authentic, historically accurate, Concours d'Elegance-level automobile restoration. Ward took a fancy to the early Toyota FJ40 Land Cruiser and nearly 20 years ago developed a business to restore or more accurately, remanufacture as new, vintage cruisers. He, his wife and a merry band of hot rodders, fabricators, technicians and automotively talented elves opened TLC in a former car lot in Southern California's San Fernando Valley. They set up the shop and started restoring and essentially remanufacturing early cruisers to look and run just as they did the day they were built. The quality of these restorations is first rate, but this level of handwork is expensive, as the trucks are disassembled down to their frames, then virtually rebuilt as new from the tires up.

Customers loved TLC's level of quality and authenticity, and began asking for appearance and performance upgrades, which Ward at first resisted, then ultimately offered. Besides his exceptional technical and mechanical skills, Ward also is a gifted automotive designer, possessing great vision and the desire to create unique vehicles. From this he developed a sub-brand, Icon, which combines the profile and sheet metal of an early vehicle with a substantially upgraded and somewhat reimagined chassis, running gear, interior and exterior persona. The first Icon was a Toyota Land Cruiser, and the company has since developed Icon-styled Jeeps, Ford Broncos and now Dodge Power Wagons.

2 Icon D200 II

For the Power Wagon, Icon began with a mid-'60s Dodge crew cab and replaced the underpinnings with a modern-day Ram chassis and powertrain. The redone truck boasts a 5.9-liter Cummins turbodiesel modified by Gale Banks Engineering and backed by a six-speed manual transmission. The Cummins engine offers 975 pounds-feet of torque (that's not a typo, it's 975). Additional engine hardware includes a Six-Gun diesel tuner, a Banks iQ man-machine interface, a Monster-Ram intake manifold, a Banks monster diesel dual exhaust, a Banks power PDA screen and a Banks brake exhaust braking system.

The suspension and rolling stock are upgraded, while the factory 4x4 system is retained. Modifications include a 41/2-inch Baja 1000 Chase lift kit equipped with Fox 3.0 reservoir shocks underpinned by matte black finish Hutchinson 17-by-8 Monster WA-1175 series rims shod with BF Goodrich all-terrain 37-inch tires.

The cabin is substantively redesigned: It's trimmed in Rolls-Royce wool carpeting and upholstered in supple yet rugged bison hide. Upgraded air conditioning, navigation and Bluetooth are included — natch. Words can't describe the stratospheric levels of design, handcrafting and materials that go into making an old truck an Icon. Ward points to the truck's interior with pride, noting that "there's not a single bulb in it — all cabin illumination comes courtesy of various forms of efficient, high-tech LEDs." The sun visors are the same as those found in a Learjet cockpit. All the knobs on the dash are the same shape as the original black plastic Dodge pieces, except they've been remanufactured and machined out of brush-finished aluminum billet. The original radio head has been gutted, and now it controls a pop-up nav/entertainment/Bluetooth system that mates with your smartphone, which stays neatly out of sight in the factory glove box. The detailing, fabrication and finish work will drive even the most detail-oriented enthusiast just a little crazy (in a good way) with its imagination and execution.

Sitting on the big 200's re-engineered front bench provides a great view out of the decidedly 1960s window line. The tallish six-speed shifter recalls a bit of the old "granny low" stick that this truck might have had when it was new. The Cummins fires up with no drama, settling into a welcome and familiar burble at idle.

4 Icon D200 engine II
The new six-speed transmission packs a stump-puller low gear, so you can take off from a stop in 2nd and drive the box in 2nd to 6th gear most of the time. The clutch is relatively light, although the takeup is a bit higher than expected. You'll immediately notice a fountain of low-end torque, and so too many revs are needed before it's time for a higher gear. Third is a great around-town gear, and 4th will get you up any freeway on-ramp. The torque is so abundant that you won't find yourself doing a lot of shifting unless you want to, and the pitch of the turbo's gentle whistle raises and lowers like an audible tachometer. With nearly 1,000 pounds-feet of torque on hand, there's even a bit of meaningful acceleration to be found in 5th and 6th gears, so just a gentle tap of the pedal is all that's needed for most passing situations.

Since the chassis is taken from a modern Ram, the ride quality is superb; body motions are well controlled without too much pitching or harshness. The cab is well insulated, so it's quiet inside. And no 1965 Dodge truck ever steered as well as this one; of course the original black plastic tiller is now controlling a modern Ram power-steering system.

You want brakes? Here, you get all you want, with lots of stopping power and great modulation. For all of the D200's show-car levels of fit and finish, we can't imagine a better tow vehicle for your RV or car trailer, with its retro-modern look and a presence nothing else can match. The overall driving feel is one of strength, power and sophistication.

Hemi-gasoline-powered Icon 200s might cost a little less, but an elegant, luxury beast-of-burden just like this one costs nearly $300,000. Want your own? Visit the reformers gallery at www.icon4x4.

7 Icon D200 guages II

5 Icon D200 int II

1 Icon D200 II

6 Icon D200 front II

8 Icon D200 grille II

 

Comments

Looks pretty cool

$300,000? Thanks, but no thanks.

It makes no sense.

Originality should override modernity - the vehicle engineering then was based on simple equation moving from point A to B however now there are more useless features that are not connected with transportation such as car stereo, dashboard with gazillion gadgets such as low tire pressure, gas average consumption and so forth.

One wonders how one can operate a vehicle at the same time consume all that information, in addition to obey and observe vehicle & traffic laws.

Our parents enjoyed those vehicles and they were better operators of those vehicles than we are now in comparing collision and fatality figures then and now. Based on the above modernity is not a necessity thus those old engineered vehicle should be preserved intact.

Ugly!!!

Ugly!!!

I have never liked the styling on that generation of Dodge trucks, but he did a really good job with it.

i like it, but how come no picture from the rear? i love to see when someone takes a classic and makes it the way it should have been without diluting the style or heritage. oh yeah, if they can get 975 lb-ft out of a cummins with a six speed how come ram won't up the torque on the current six speed manual cummins?

Love the truck. For my money it would have to be these early model Power Wagons from legacy. @ only 100,000 save 200,000 for a house.
Love the Dodge carryall and the silver Power Wagon.

http://www.legacypowerwagon.com/

Here is the new Power Wagon from ICON.
http://www.iconvehicledynamics.com/featured-vehicles/icon-edition-power-wagon/

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H-RhGbBu1wU

$300,000!!!!! no thanks, I would buy a new truck, a new boat, a new Harley CVO, and a house! before this truck, but if I was filthy rich, or won megga-bucks $230,ooo,ooo, I would consider buying one.

I don't under stand why you would update drivetrain and then leave the interior vintage. Old trucks, from anyone, were awful to ride in.

I do agree with the ugly comments. Trucks were an after thought to Dodge untill the mid 90s.

If I were going to spend that kind of money on a old truck it would not be a Dodge.

@josh, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=paZP6_qzz2E

Sure looks like it would be a lot of fun to drive... but pricetag is way out of my range.

Yet another ICON vehicle designed and built for people with a lot more money then brains.Ahhh yeah,to be dumb and rich,lmao.

@ToxicSludge - A while back, I read a story where PC types were ridiculing Bill Gates for buying a high end Ferrari. A guy good with math wrote a news story about it in rebuttal to the quacks. He pointed out that relative to his net worth, that car was as expensive for him to buy as most of use buying a candy bar from the corner story.

@ Lou: Boy,that sure puts it into perspective doesn't it.I'll stick with the occasional candy bar,lol.

@ Lou,

I think the Hamster needs some driving lessons. Perhaps his small size kept him from seeing the other cars, and the wall and various other things he smashed :)

Mr. Gates also owns a Porshce 959 that he couldn't even register or drive up until a couple of years ago, along with a McLaren F1 (in maroon of all colors). Then again he must only pay $9 for a hair =cut so I guess he saves his money in some ways :)

Personally $300k is more than I'd want to spend too but there are those who love old trucks and if they have the means they can justify the costs. I guess it is not different than an old hot rod truck for six figures that is useless for actual truck duty.

Looks awesome but $300,000 no way!

@ToxicSludge - somehow, I don't feel like a billionaire when I buy my kids 2 candy bars.
That must be because of all of the lint that comes out with the nickles when I rummage around my pockets for change :)

@howam00
I heard that Top Gear might be ending. That would be too bad but one should quit while they are ahead. Clarkson is probably running out of politically incorrect material for his jokes.

We can only dream of having the disposable income of the types who can afford trucks like the Icon. I can get similar power and fun out of a 2013 Ram and still have 200,000 left over. Well, actually nothing left over since I'd have to borrow to get the Ram in the first place ;)

Nice truck.

A bit expensive and a very rich rancher or oilmans toy.

I wonder if they made a very basic truck. Equivalent to a 60s base model what the cost would be now?

But have all of current emissions gear etc. 2/3 to 3/4 the current price?

Nice truck.

A bit expensive and a very rich rancher or oilmans toy.

I wonder if they made a very basic truck. Equivalent to a 60s base model what the cost would be now?

But have all of current emissions gear etc. 2/3 to 3/4 the current price?

Before anyone worries, I double posted.

At least I can honestly say, I have the same headlight in my Harley Davidson Sportser, the chrome version anyway, and with just one, the road is lighted up like it is day, I acn only imagine what 4 of them will do?

Can they purchase a rolling chassis from Ram or do they buy a complete truck and gut it?

Old truck, new chassis. Nothing we haven't seen before, but that price might as well be a million as long as you're talking crazy.

People do if for kicks or they own a newer truck that's a roll-over, has legal, emissions or DMV issues, embezzled or simply stolen.

I'd much rather have a late 60s, or 70-71 Dodge then these years. I never was a fan of the dual headlight. My brother did have a 61 or so that had a 383 with a four speed.

Perhaps I'd get a Dodge Dude truck, it's an actual name Dodge used in the late 60s.

But nothing even 25% of this price!

@David Robertson: Yeah, it takes so much attention to look at those tire pressure monitors, and all the current info my 2010 Ram gauges gets me, including current mileage, exact engine oil temp, exact oil pressure, exact water temp, exact trans temp, trailer brake control settings, and still have time to change radio stations, without wrecking! Big wonder I haven't wrecked yet! It's SOOOO hard to do! Maybe Dave you just can't chew bubble gum and walk?

Next you will probably suggest a person driving with one arm is dangerous! Like we MUST have both hands on the wheel, at ALL TIMES!

Paranoid people.

wow only $300k . I wonder if they can throw in a ashtray for a extra $100k .
please mr president can ya give me $400 k and just put it on the $17 trillion . cheers .

@big al from oz

a little of topic, but considering what you said about a classic meeting modern emissions gm high performance has a classic chevy, a '55 chevy i think, called the E-rod. it is basically a classic with a corvette/camaro production powertrain (6.2L with cats and every other thing needed to meet modern standards).

@TRX4 Tom... right on I bet Dave cried when they stopped building trucks with carburetors.

That's some sweet Cummins action! The truck isn't exactly my cup of tea, but I can certainly see why someone shopping in that price range would be interested.

@RED Why is anybody who is wealthy and doesn't like exactly the same things you like automatically dumb? Nobody, particularly wealthy folks, cares how jealous and disappointed in your own life you are. This isn't kidergarten, and "Ain't nobody got time for that!"

@HEMIV8, ICON 4x4 and ICON Vehicle Dynamics are two different companies. ICON 4x4 makes the D200 above and other ultra expensive 4x4s. Icon Vehicle Dynamics makes suspension products.

Thanks crutch. Glade I could lean on you for that nugget.

For @toxicsludge (and others just like) whom dwell in the shadow of your keyboard slandering those who are capable of design and creation.. Why is the pricetag more important than the craft that went into it? I can only assume there was a good amount of talent and collaboration that went into this truck, thus. You guys should be thanking this guy for putting 300k into it, otherwise you'd have nothing better to do than listen to your mom yell at you that you Mac-n-cheese and hot dogs are ready.. Kudos to ICON for finding those who believe in the brand and allow them to push the envelope..

Gorgeous, but way too damn expensive and definitely not worth $300k.

Amazing Truck

ill take it the thing is gorgious im in love with it 300k so worth it every vehicle ive owned has been a dodge if u have it when i save the money ill take it unless finacing is avaliable

I could have a shop restore one of these and use a new dodge as a donor for less that's fucked



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