A time for drastic change
1988-89 Dodge Ram T-300 concept sketchesIn a search for inspiration, Dodge’s designers turned to historical books and photographs of old American trucks. They were enamored with the post World War II Dodge Power Wagon and contemporary tractor-trailer trucks, such as Kenworths and Peterbilts.

This led to the sketches to the right.

From the contenders, a finalist was chosen and approved, with the 1994 model year set as the target.
Below, an early T-300 clay is shown bearing a strong resemblance to what would be the production model, particularly at the front (shown in the photo gallery). Only the tail lights, sculpted rocker panels, and detailing look substantially different.

1989 Dodge Ram T-300 early clay rear three-qtr finished

1989 Dodge Ram T-300 final clay sketch of tailgatesTwo things that didn’t make it to production, the dual circular tail light design and what is referred to as a clam shell tailgate, were both cut due to cost considerations.

To the left, several alternate tail light and tailgate options are sketched for consideration.
Below, the final clay is shown with more traditional-looking tail lights but still not what would be on the production model.

1989 Dodge Ram T-300 final clay rear three-qtr finished

Be sure to visit the photo gallery which has many more images that are not included in the text above, including interior mock-ups.

[Edit: Since writing this, I added a third page to the gallery which contains pictures that I took almost two decades ago. I explain at the top of that page the significance and circumstances that led to the opportunity.]

Imagery credit: Chrysler Group, LLC; San-Ei Shobo Publishing

Continue below to the three-page photo gallery.

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