The old DS Ram 1500 could be in for a facelift, with strong sales in its home market helping Fiat Chrysler make a case for keeping it alive.
- shares

Ram could update its long-serving DS 1500 to extend its life as a cheaper, simpler foil to the high-tech fifth-generation currently on sale in the USA.

Speaking at Fiat Chrysler's earnings call, FCA CEO Mike Manley said minor updates could be in store for the 1500 Classic (as it's known) to keep it relevant in the crowded North American pickup market.

The DS 1500 is the only option in Australia at the moment, although the new DT 1500 is expected to arrive late in 2020. Ram has sold 1378 year-to-date, making the V8 dual-cab ute a stronger seller than the Mercedes-Benz X-Class.

Above: The DS Ram 1500 currently offered in Australia, pictured above the new DT 1500 available in the USA

The superseded model is currently sold side-by-side with the DT in America, where it's marketed as the no-frills 1500 Classic Tradesman.

Mike Manley is clearly pleased with the two-pronged approach, telling investors Ram trucks seems to be "growing at a relatively good pace" and "keeping flexibility going forward is important".

"Which means if we make changes to the Classic, it may well stay as a Classic but updated Classic, if you know what I mean," Manley said, as reported by Motor Trend.

Exactly how much longer the DS will stick around wasn't confirmed, but a proper model-year upgrade could add years to its life. Fiat Chrysler is no stranger to extending the life of strong-selling models, even though they may be lacking certain features available in fresher competitors.

The current Dodge Charger and Challenger are based on a 13-year-old chassis, but are expected to carry over in to the mid-2020s without any major revisions.