We love the Ram truck line up that you can find at All Star Dodge Ram near O’Fallon but we have sometimes wondered where and how these trucks got their start. Let’s take a look back in time at the start of the Ram lineup of trucks.
The Dodge brothers (John and Horace) got their start making parts for Oldsmobile, Ford, and others; then they struck out on their own, with the first Dodge Brothers automobile in 1914 instantly earning a strong reputation and good sales. They did not build a truck until World War I — and that was a panel van, not a pickup – with a half-ton capacity and a 35 horsepower engine. The underlying chassis was likely almost unchanged from their cars.
In 1921, Graham Brothers started selling one-and-a-half ton pickups through Dodge dealers, using their own bodies on Dodge chassis. A one-ton showed up later in the 1920s, powered by that same four cylinder engine. Dodge Brothers bought Graham Brothers over 1925 and 1926 — and thereby made their first civilian trucks. (The Grahams moved on to bigger ventures.)
In 1928, Chrysler acquired Dodge Brothers, after giving Plymouth dealers a line of Fargo trucks, which sold in the US from 1928 through 1930, and continued for decades as an export brand; they had nothing in common with Dodge trucks, sharing parts with Plymouth and DeSoto instead.
“Dodge launched a half-ton pickup for 1929 just after its acquisition by Chrysler, the last truck designed by the old Dodge Brothers company. Three engines were available – two Dodge engines with six cylinders (63 and 78 hp), and a Maxwell four cylinder that produced just 45 hp. The trucks had four wheel hydraulic brakes, a major safety feature unique among pickups.”-allpar.com
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