Is Ram Working on an Innovative Tailgate?

RM014_025FN II

By Tim Esterdahl

Ram may have the next "one-up" tailgate design for full-size trucks. The new tailgate is quite revolutionary and could appear in the next Ram 1500 refresh coming in 2015.

According to Allpar.com, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office received a "Multi-Functional Tailgate" patent on Feb. 20, 2013. Patent 8,740,279 describes a design in which the tailgate can be swung open like a pair of doors or split open to lay one side (or both) down like a traditional tailgate.

The new tailgate borrows design ideas from the Honda Ridgeline and, for those with longer memories, the Ford Excursion. It also expands on Ford's idea (from the 2015 F-150) of a push-button tailgate release with touchpads to actuate the different choices.

Apparently the idea is to give consumers more choices. The patent with multiple illustrations explains consumers may desire "to have … a portion of the closure member [door] to be opened independent of another member of the closure member."

The self-explanatory illustrations do a good job of showing exactly what Ram is thinking. It is yet another step for truck manufacturers looking to improve on the tailgate design. As with any new truck part reliability is a concern, but the usefulness of this design could override those concerns.

With the patent filed in 2013, the timing may be right for Ram to bring it to the market soon. The Ram 1500 is expected to be refreshed in 2015 and receive a major update in 2017.

Allpar.com illustrations

Ram tailgate Innovation II

 

Comments

It borrows a lot more ideas from a 1972 Chevelle stationwagon than it does a Honda Ridgeline.

"The Ram 1500 is expected to be refreshed in 2015 and receive a major update in 2017."

This is going to be my next tailgate in 2015 if all goes well or I might need to wait to 2017.

Hopefully they make the design stronger than the current one. I have a crack 2 feet long on both sides of the bed on my ram at the seam along where the tailgate latch is on both sides.

nice ram, GM should have this one down pat around 2020

Why is Ram worrying about tailgates when they don't even offer enough payload to even be able to put anything in the bed to start with anyways LOL!

In the 24 years I've been driving I have never been in a situation where having half a tailgate up or down or open side to side would helped in any way.

Even the Suburban and Tahoe have done away with the barn door design.

Just like other Ram recent 'innovations' it just seem to be another 20 year-old recycled idea from another company. This time it's Ford.

Ram box- stolen from the Avalanche
Rear coil springs- stolen from Avalanche, Suburban, Tahoe
Now their trying to adapt an Excursion tailgate on the Ram.

What, you load up to around 1800 with the tailgate closed, on a 1500, johnnie duh? Or 3000 plus for 2500s? Or you can't read to see their specs?

Refrigerator door tailgate coming to Fiat-Ram in 2015...

The answer to the question that wasn't asked.

A new twist on the station wagon tailgates of many years ago.

It is yet another step for truck manufacturers looking to improve on the tailgate design."

@Tim,

No. More like another stupid change for change's sake. Fiat engineers are trying to justify their jobs by some freezer door tailgate contraption being better than the current one. This kind of insistance is out of proportion to professional knowledge and common sense.

Change the tailgate for change's sake - no - change because it is imperative, and a real improvement - yes!

This does nothing for me. A tailgate step is a better idea.

Can someone explain to me the reasoning behind this design? What is the purpose of a two-door tailgate? Does it do anything that my traditional tailgate can't do?

My redneck coworker just said, "if you ride with one down, it saves on fuel." C'mon there's got to be a better answer...


A split tailgate?

I'm sure this is one more sign that Ram is carifying their 1500's.

Guys with rigid tonneau covers will love this.

Someone posted a link to this from AllPar a few days ago.

That arrangement was on the 90's Chevy Astro Van. How can they patent that? Can you say "prior art"?

HEMI posted a link to this on the weekend.

Ram is only maker left without some kind of rear step. Ford has the very popular tailgate step. Chevy has a new corner bumper step.

I'd think Ram would add a step for people to use. But I guess Ram wants to do something without copying Ford or GM so they come up with this.

@TRX-4 Tom Yeah some people use their 1500s for work like me. My double cab 2014 5.3L has more payload then Ram's best offering a single cab tickastar 2wd 3.6L.

http://www.chevrolet.com/silverado-1500-pickup-truck/specs/capabilities.config%3Ddouble_cab_standard_box.html

http://www.ramtrucks.com/en/ram_1500/capability/

Why don't Ram invest the money into the chassis and suspensions of their pickups rather than a 'door' or worse still a tailgate.

@TRX-4 Tom Yeah some people use their 1500 trucks for work like me. My 2014 double cab 5.3L 4wd WWT2 trim has more payload (1974 lbs) then Ram's best offering of a 2wd single cab 3.6L tickastar at (1,910 lbs). I can still carry people and keep stuff nice in dry in the cab, can't do that with a Ram. Looked at Ram trucks before I bought another Chevy just couldn't see why I would want to go backwards and have less payload with a brand new Ram similar equip then my 2011 Chevy.

Agreed. Ditch the funky tailgate and work on a step. That will be a quick to break tailgate. Maybe work on adding payload.

Innovative but redundant.

I can imagine Howie Long in a commercial right about now.......

BREAKING NEWS

If you are tired of the all leather bland interiors, you are in luck.

Sources say Ram is working on a denim and leather interior for 2015 or 2017. It is coming from the Fiat Ferrari and will be yet another step for Ram to take the lead on interior design.

http://denimology.com/2011/12/denim-ize_your_ferrari_interior

Demin and leather brought us all together!

I'd buy one of those......looks handy...much easier to get into the bed if you can step all the way to the bumper.....

(and for the record I hate rams...)

@Lou,

The pictures tell the story better than the words, as is probably already obvious, and those who have had or borrowed pickups can probably think of MANY TIMES when it would have been handy to have DOORS on the back instead of a traditional tailgate, or twin tailgate segments. It makes CLIMBING in EASIER, among other things, and is most likely much EASIER TO OPERATE than a HEAVY full-size-truck tailgate.

Wow, PUTC staff actually visits allpar?

The tailgate is a unique idea. I'm not sure that it would be for me, but I do see benefit in it.

Jumping up on the tailgate to get in the bed can be cumbersome, especially if you're doing it many times a day.

What about a 65 year old guy who has trouble getting up in the bed to begin with? It simplifies the issue, just swing open the tailgate, and slide the cargo in. No more leaning over an open tailgate to try to reach something.

I have no problem with Ram selling such a design. They just need to make it an option. If it were standard equipment, it might scare some guys away. That kind of tailgate might not be perceived as being "masculine" enough.

@Tom Lemon/DenverMike/TRX-4 Tom and all the other detractors,

The more you push the more I will become resolute.

What I find intriguing is that you have labelled me a midsize zealot, when in fact I don't support anything.

I give midsize feedback because you guys don't have what we have.

You seem to talk about midsizers much more than I do, you must very interested in them.

Give it up, between all of you I don't think you are convincing.

It's all well and good to be loyal. But loyalty can only go so far.

When there is a plethora of facts and data supporting an argument it becomes rather boring. Sort of like re-inventing the wheel, if you have heard of that phrase.

Most of the time the impression I'm gaining is that I'm debating the same person, but with different names.

Post what you want, I have proven all of you are just ignorant and fearful of what you deem the unknown.

Our country went more or less what you are going through now. You have nothing to worry about. No matter what happens in your vehicle market there will always be some form of light commercial vehicle.

Johnny Doe is spot on. The new tailgate will help loading grocceries better.

Speaking about a split tailgate....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WVdzP53X9vw

@Lou BC - "I can imagine Howie Long in a commercial right about now..."

At that moment there was a knock on the door, and Lou BC came in. He ran to Howie and took his left hand, awkwardly and shyly. He stroked it gently and then he blushed and turned hastily away....

That new idea of this tailgate is handy if you don't use your truck for real work. if you did it would only last a few months.

My tailgate is my work bench on the job site, I use it everyday. Give me my old dependable tailgate any day - GM, Ford or Dodge and keep your Show and NO Work one.

my truck is a 86 and still going strong at 350,000 miles.

lets see in 10 years which is still useable. they should be working on making better trucks not prettier ones.

DiM makes me sing,

Lou loves my bling.

I've got Mark Williams in my bed,

And control what Mike Levine says.

Oh great, fiat adds more crap that's going to break for TONY to fix.

Wow! That new tailgate will be popular in my neighborhood with all the crackheads and pillpoppers and a few methfreaks so they can rob that tailgate then sell it the next day on the local online classified.
I am sure that new tailgate will adapt and fit a much older Ram and won't have a problem selling it ,, they need money for a fix man!
hey man I need a fix man

Something tells me if you took a video cam and mike around to RAM service departments and interviewed folks waiting to get their truck serviced or repaired that VERY few of them would tell you they were just sitting around aching for RAM to design an "innovative" tailgate.

Just sayin'

@ Johnny Doe

Still posting the lies about pay load on the Ram I see along with your buddies.

Here are a few facts for you:

Ram 3.6L Pentastar load capability: Reg Cab 1,590 pounds
Ram 3.6L Pentastar load capability: Quad Cab 1,920 pounds
Ram 5.7L Hemi load capability: Reg Cab 1,630 pounds
Ram 5.7L Hemi load capability: Quad Cab 1,830 pounds
Ram 3.0L Ecodiesel load capability: Reg Cab 1,580 pounds
Ram 3.0L Ecodiesel load capability: Quad Cab 1,430 pounds

Seems pretty capable to me and if you need more payload then the Ram 1500 is rated for you need to be in a Ram 2500 or Ram 3500.

How about tow capability:

Ram 3.6L Pentastar tow capability: Reg Cab 7,300 pounds
Ram 3.6L Pentastar tow capability: Quad Cab 7,450 pounds
Ram 5.7L Hemi tow capability: Reg Cab 9,200 pounds
Ram 5.7L Hemi tow capability: Quad Cab 10,400 pounds
Ram 3.0L Ecodiesel tow capability: Reg Cab 9,200 pounds
Ram 3.0L Ecodiesel tow capability: Quad Cab 8,950 pounds

Oh and lets point out that the Ram 3500 is rated to tow up to 30,000 pounds best in the industry.

@ Johnny Doe who said:

@TRX-4 Tom Yeah some people use their 1500 trucks for work like me. My 2014 double cab 5.3L 4wd WWT2 trim has more payload (1974 lbs) then Ram's best offering of a 2wd single cab 3.6L tickastar at (1,910 lbs). I can still carry people and keep stuff nice in dry in the cab, can't do that with a Ram. Looked at Ram trucks before I bought another Chevy just couldn't see why I would want to go backwards and have less payload with a brand new Ram similar equip then my 2011 Chevy.


So Johnny Doe that 64 pound difference is make it or break it for you? That is right sports fans 64 whole pounds.

That is the difference in pay load but then again we all know that math is not your strong point.

Big Horn, don't look at book specs to determine payload, open the door on one drivers side and read what the sticker says, say you read that its 1400lbs payload on that ecodiesel, after all the options are put on on at the factory, that number could be down to 1000 lbs in a heartbeat.

I looked at one the other day and the door sticker said not to exceed 1080lbs. throw 3, 200 pound guys in there and now its more like 500 lbs

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@ nitro, so are you trying to pass this off as it only effects Ram trucks and both Ford and Chevy are not effected in the same way?

Every truck out there will carry far more than the ratings but every manufacture has to post a number for liability reasons.

With the new standards that should have already been in effect just maybe while Ram is not officially using them, maybe they have already designed them into the current trucks so when the other two Ford and Chevy do use them one day Ram won't take a huge hit in lost capacity.

That aluminum body that Ford is crowing about is not about fuel economy, it is all about trying to over come the lost capacity of the new standards.

Ford claims they will use the new tow standard with the 2015 model so we will have to wait and see as they have lie about that in the past all because the new standard put a serious hurting on their numbers which would have made them look bad.

The standards are known and it is a shame that the people doing articles and tests don't use the new standard to show what the trucks will really do when it is applied.

Pickup truck dot com could show both the new standard and the claims of the manufactures but instead they take the cowards way out and refuse to do this which makes their towing and payload shoot outs worthless.

Remember the Rampage concept truck in 2006 with the integrated tailgate ramp? Why not use that idea instead of splitting the tailgate? To me, a ramp is more useful than a tailgate that can be swung open like a door.

@ Ram Big Horn 1500 The 64 pounds wouldn't of matter to me if it was a ext cab 4wd truck. I need a ext cab truck for the odd times one of my workers car/truck breaks down and needs a ride to work or when I go to look at jobs people ride along. There is the few times if my guys have been busting their a@@ I taken them out and buy them lunch, plus it keeps my paper work dry and safe. I thought of buying a 2500 but why would I buy something that cost more for yearly inspections, fuel, and to insure when they're are cheaper costing half ton trucks that will do the job.

(math is not your strong point. ) Okay so yah got me I'm no mathematician never claim to be one, but I look at the big picture which must not be you're strong point because I'm saving money in the long run buying a half ton vs 3/4 ton truck. How you might ask as said above fuel, yearly inspections, insurance and not to mention half ton trucks cost a good bit less to start with over a 2500. Don't get all butt hurt on me though cause I didn't buy a Ram, I might try a Ram next time around if they up their payload.

v8 4wd ext cab truck*

To many extra parts for me. but would be nice to swing the tailgate out of the way when forklifting pallets into the back of the truck, but more common on practice on HD trucks.

@Ram Big Horn 1500,

No Im not passing this off as it only effects Ram, sorry I did not clarify that, I was only stating to look at the door sticker to see what you truck LEGALLY can haul. Sure these trucks can haul way more than posted, but the fact remains, the sticker is the Legal doc on what it can actually do, you still need to weigh your truck if bought off a lot, since the dealer could have added more options, the important thing here is, if you weight your truck, you can then subtract that weight from your GVW and know your exact payload.........

Also to note, I was in a ram(09) and loved that truck, so I am a ram fan for sure, I am now in a superduty 2500 diesel because I liked the truck better that the 2500 Ram, but I like all trucks, when I buy, I buy what I like best at the time, not tied to any vehicle brand. I will say I wont buy another GM 1/2 ton product, but when shopping for 3/4 ton trucks, I almost bought one of those, but the deal fell through....

Ram Big Horn 1500 Talk bout posting lies I just double check you're payload numbers and you're off on most of them. You should go get some new glass and go reread LOL!

http://www.ramtrucks.com/en/towing_guide/


Anyways I just did a built it on Rams site on what I would buy equal to my Chevy. Tradesman 4wd quad cab 6'4 in bed 5.7L 8 speed and the payload came out to be 1,511 lbs That's 462 lbs less then my 2014 Chevy and 222 lbs less them my 2011 Chevy.

I guess payload number on the door sticker doesn't help Ford and GM to sell more trucks anymore. I can't wait for June numbers.
RAM is the most innovative truck company on the world.

johnny Doe, take a pic of your door sticker, and weigh your truck otherwise your numbers are waaaay off. A friend of mine has the same model truck you describe in a 2014 and his door sticker is 1567, but again, if you didn't weigh your truck and do some math, posting what you think your trucks payload and what it actually is will be 2 different things

@ Johnny Doe

The numbers I posted are out of the 2014 Ram sale broacher.

@Ram Big Horn 1500 - problem with Ram is you have to get a lower trim level truck to get any decent cargo capacity and 4x2.
Any crewcab specs?
You can get a F150 Lariet Supercrew 4x4 6.5 box with 2,300 lb cargo capacity and 11,200 tow.
GM offers a crewcab 4x4 6.5 box 4x4 with 2,000lb cargo and 12,000 towing.

Ford and GM with their heaviest 1/2 ton pickups have higher capacities than Ram in their lightest configurations.

TTAC just had a test of a 1500 Ram provided by one of the readers on the site. This is exactly what the owner of the Ram 1500 said,
“I wanted a pickup next, but I wanted a newer design, which ruled out the F-150. It was really a toss-up between the RAM and the Silverado. The Silverado was probably the better truck, but the RAM was the better car."

"But the Ram was the better car."


Something like the Astro van tailgate. Good job Ram taking another great idea by GM.



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