It was exactly one year ago, on the cover of the July/August 2002 issue of Truck Trend, that we showed you the first SRT-10 concept truck from Dodge. Now it's ready to go into production with the real thing--almost. Although not scheduled to go on sale until the fourth quarter of this year, the SRT-10 surely will mix things up a bit in the war for pickup horsepower.

One of the first offsprings of DaimlerChrysler's Performance Vehicle Operation division, the Ram SRT-10 is equipped with the new 503-cubic-inch all-aluminum V-10, rated at 500 horsepower at 5600 rpm and 525 lb-ft of torque at 4600 rpm. With 22-inch rims and 305/40R22 Pirelli Scorpion Zero tires, the only clues to the power hidden inside is the sport truck's lowered stance, hood air-intake scoops, a subtle rearend wing on the tonneau cover, and the two relatively small SRT-10 badges.

The slightly modified suspension drops the front end one inch and the rear by two. Heavy-duty anti-roll bars are used in front and back, with stiffer Bilstein shocks and performance-tuned coil and leaf springs underneath. Standard 15-inch Ram rotors are fitted up front with Ram HD 14-inch rotors in back to stop the beast, while a PVO-tuned Ram HD rack-and-pinion steering box and IFS keep handling tight.

Backing up the engine is an industry-first six-speed (a Tremec T56) manual transmission, custom-like bucket seats, and silver-metal dash and gauge accents. In addition, aluminum performance pedals, carbon-fiber trim, leather-wrapped steering wheel, and satin-silver center console add to the high-performance feel of the truck. Nothing about pricing will be released for some time, but you can guess this will list around the $40,000 range (at least), and quantities will be limited.