There's quite a bit of buzz about which major automaker will be next to enter the growing midsize pickup truck segment. Many pundits are betting on Ford to announce something as soon as next year; meanwhile our spy shooters have seen modified, disguised Fiat Toros driving around Michigan for a few months. We're sharing the latest camouflaged vehicle our photographers have captured. This is what they had to say:
"We caught a disguised midsize pickup leaving the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles' headquarters in Auburn Hills, Mich. It raises new questions about the timing of a pickup truck for Dodge or Ram.
"Underneath all that camouflage is the Fiat Toro pickup - reportedly based on a lengthened version of the Jeep Renegade. As if on cue, the disguised truck was seen on public roads accompanied by a Jeep Renegade support vehicle. The Toro looks to be more than 2 feet longer than the Renegade, making it a vehicle much more useful than the Renegade from a utility point of view.
"It's likely that FCA product planners are looking for a way to leverage the automaker's global platforms in a way to launch something well below the full-size Ram pickups to broaden its U.S. product portfolio. The disguised truck running in Auburn Hills is certainly interesting, but is it too small? As is, this new pickup would be smaller than the midsize Chevrolet Colorado, Honda Ridgeline or Toyota Tacoma.
"What we have here is a smaller, truck-flavored 'crossover' pickup that might be able to come to market at a lower price, get better fuel economy than the bigger, heavier ladder-frame pickups and still deliver some pickup capabilities. Like the Hyundai Santa Cruz concept, this could be the start of a new segment in the U.S. market. Whatever the case, there are some curious-looking camouflaged trucks prowling around the FCA Technology Center these days."
We'll be on the lookout for more prototypes and will provide more details as they become available. Stay tuned.
KGP Photography images