First Look: 2012 Ram Laramie Limited

The Ram Laramie Longhorn package — which debuted in 2011 — wowed buyers with sumptuous interior materials, but its rancher-inspired design may not have appealed to city slickers. Perhaps the 2012 Ram Laramie Limited package, which debuts at the 2012 Chicago Auto Show, is the fix: it encompasses all the niceties of the Longhorn but in a less flamboyant package.

Available on both light- (1500) and heavy-duty (2500 and 3500) Ram pickups, the Laramie Limited package applies roughly the same interior and exterior treatments across the board. Outside, designers strived to give the Limited a clean, elegant look. Apart from 2500- and 3500 models painted white or red, Laramie Limited trucks receive painted front and rear bumper fascias. A chrome grille flanks horizontal billet inserts cribbed from the Ram Sport trim level. Two-tone paint schemes — a hallmark of the Longhorn — are unavailable, and buyers are further restricted to six exterior colors (black, bright silver metallic, white, and mineral gray metallic) on 1500 models.

All exterior badging — including the vaunted “Hemi” or “Cummins” emblems — are stripped from the truck’s side. A chrome body-side molding runs the length of the cab, and serve as a parallel to the standard chrome tubular side steps. Other chrome accents include mirror caps and door handles. Laramie Limited 1500 trucks receive 20-inch forged aluminum wheels with silver pockets, but 2500 and 3500 models make do with 17-inch fully-polished aluminum wheels.

As your mother always told you, it’s what’s inside that counts. Natura leather adorns every seating surface, but unlike the Longhorn’s hides, these seats do without the embossed cowboy boot patterns or the belt buckle-sized medallions. Instead, the slate-hued seats receive contrasting graystone piping and contrast stitching. A similar combination of leather and stitching is also used to trim the instrument cluster brow, the center console lid, door panels, steering wheel, and shift knob. Flap-closure seat back pockets, like those introduced on the Longhorn, appear on the Limited and remain crafted from leather.

Other premium content unique to the Longhorn Limited’s interior include Berber carpeted floor mats, bright chrome vent trim, and piano black trim for the center stack and door panel inserts. A Limited badge is affixed to the upper glove box panel, while the gauge cluster boasts a marking reading “Designed in Detroit.” (Perhaps it’s best it doesn’t use Chrysler’s “Imported from Detroit” tagline, considering 2500 and 3500 models are actually imported from Mexico).

Predictably, a luxury truck like the Laramie Limited also lumps in quite a bit of standard content. Front seats are heated and cooled, while rear outboard seating positions are heated. Chrysler’s uConnect touchscreen infotainment system, which incorporates navigation and hands-free calling functions, is also added to every Laramie Limited model. Pricing hasn’t been announced yet, but we wouldn’t be surprise if it falls in line with the Laramie Longhorn, which boasts similar content. If so, expect 1500 models to start close to $44,000; 2500 models near $46,500; and 3500 models around $54,600.

We also wouldn’t be shocked if the Laramie Limited is something of a swansong for the current iteration of the Ram Pickup, at least in half-ton guise. Chrysler officials indicated earlier this month that the 2013 Ram should launch in the third quarter of 2012, making a debut at the New York auto show in April seem quite likely.

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