Dodge Rampage Engine
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The Dodge Rampage was built from 1982 through 1984, a unibody sub-compact coupe with a utility bed and a half-ton rating. It would be wrong to speak of Dodge Rampage engine sizes in the plural, since the vehicle was only made with one option, the 2.2-liter K 14 engine.
Specs and Performance of the Chrysler K 14 Engine
This was a 4-cylinder motor with straight-4 design employing a carburetor. The 2.2-liter engine produced a modest 96hp, enough to give some pep to the lightweight Dodge Rampage and its cousin the Plymouth Scamp.
Both vehicles were configured for front-wheel drive. This wasn’t attractive to drivers looking for a sporty ride, but it improved the handling of this lightweight vehicle in winter road conditions.
The front-wheel drive also eliminated the potential for fish-tailing that can occur with a heavily-loaded rear-wheel drive truck. The end result was a vehicle that handled like a small, sporty car and less like a truck.
In the first year of production, the this two-door truck was outfitted with both a manual four-speed transmission and a three-speed automatic transmission. The performance was upgraded in 1983 when the Chrysler Corporation offers a five-speed manual transmission as an option. In terms of gas mileage, the Dodge Rampage was rated at 21 MPG in the city and 29 MPG on the highway.
Dodge Rampage Competition
Chrysler hoped that the Rampage would compete with the best-selling Chevy El Camino in the hybrid car/truck market. The key competitors were the El Camino, the Volkswagen Sportruck and the Subaru Brat. The El Camino outlasted the Rampage by several years, but it too was discontinued before the end of the decade.
When compared with the competition, the Rampage got better gas mileage than most, and the front-wheel drive attracted many buyers.
Sales Figures for the Dodge Rampage
Despite the lack of multiple Dodge Rampage engine sizes that might have attracted a wider variety of buyers, sales weren’t bad. The first year, 1982, was the best as the public jumped at this unique offering. A total of 17,636 cars were sold that year. The sales figures for 1983 were 8,033, and 11,732 were sold in 1984. In all, the sales of this vehicle were disappointing, so Chrysler discontinued production. The rise in popularity of pickup trucks harmed the sales of all car-truck hybrids including the very popular Chevy El Camino.