Employees at Chrysler Group's St. Louis North Assembly Plant received Motor Trend magazine's "Truck of the Year" award. The award presentation recognized employees for their contributions in the production of the all-new 2003 Dodge Ram Heavy Duty truck. "This is one of the most coveted awards in the auto industry," said Tom LaSorda, Chrysler Group executive vice president-Manufacturing. "It represents the dedication and hard work of our employees and their contribution to the overall success of our new 2003 Dodge Ram." According to the company, the 2003 Dodge Ram Heavy Duty 2500 pickup was named Motor Trend magazine's 2003 "Truck of the Year" following an intensive three-week competition. "From the onset of our 'Truck of the Year' competition, we knew the Ram Heavy Duty was a prime contender," said Todd Lassa, Senior Detroit editor, Motor Trend. "It fulfills the promise set forth last year by the introduction of an all-new Ram, and now offers the power and capability expected in the three-quarter and one-ton segments - - plus features, content, and capabilities that in many ways raise the bar for this class of truck." According to Lassa, competitors under consideration for Motor Trend "Truck of the Year" undergo rigorous scrutiny, including testing of on- and off-road performance, towing capacity, and loaded and unloaded hauling capability. Details of the competition are published in the March issue of Motor Trend magazine. "We now have the strongest line-up of full-size trucks in the industry," said Frank Klegon, Chrysler Group vice president-Truck Product Team. "The Dodge Ram Heavy Duty 2500 and 3500 are the personification of all things good about pickup trucks. They are fun to drive, affordable and they can haul, tow and off-road unlike any other vehicle." "I just want to commend the employees of the plant," said Tony Candela, president of UAW Local 136, "They deserve this award for their dedication, hard work and commitment to building a quality truck for our customers." Ronnell Coleman, president of UAW Local 595 said, "This type of result does not come without sacrifice. A lot of people have put in many long hours to bring this award to St. Louis North." St. Louis North is one of two Chrysler Group facilities located in Fenton, Missouri. The second facility, St. Louis South Assembly Plant, builds the Chrysler Voyager, Dodge Caravan and Dodge Grand Caravan minivans. Chrysler Group has been a part of the greater St. Louis business community for more than four decades.