So there we were, on the upper floor of the South Hall, looking out across the vast swath of aftermarket businesses, and the only vehicles we could see were Jeeps and Raptors. We had to rub our eyes for moment to make sure it was not a mirage when we walked into American Expedition Vehicles and its display.
The large, silver 2014 Ram 2500 Crew Cab standing proudly in the center had drawn more than just our attention over the course of the week, and we caught up with Matt Felderman, marketing coordinator for AEV, to figure out why. Aside from the obvious reasons, like its sleek form-fitting fender flares and glossy wheels, there was more than met the eye when it came to this daunting diesel.
In the beginning, the guys at AEV had decided that its Ram was going to do things differently. Essentially, the goals were to not only economize space, fitting in the largest tires for the smallest amount of lift, but to also maintain a distinguished style.
“Our inspiration was to take what we had in our Jeeps–the complete, refined look–and put those elements into a full-size truck with tons of cargo capacity and towing capability,” said Felderman.
Over the course of the 10-month build, AEV developed and installed several concept parts. These included the Ram-specific, cast aluminum wheels (called “Katla”), which are SAE J2530 certified, can handle up to 3,650 pounds, and mimic the design of the Jeep “Savegre” and its recessed valve stem.
There’s also the front bumper, a unique, modular, stamped-steel piece intended for the 2011-current 1500-5500 models. Super-strong and bold-looking, it complements the truck in every way, and mates perfectly with the fender flares.
Just going by looks alone, the time and effort spent on these parts have paid off. Felderman was glad that the team took the time it needed to produce something special: “We never want to rush anything and sacrifice quality, just for the sake of being first to market.” Words to live by, folks.
See more facts and features about the truck on AEV’s website, and check them out on Facebook too. Be sure stay tuned to what AEV has coming down the pipeline (hint: bumpers and wheels) as 2014 looms around the corner.