Could Ram be bringing back the mid-sized Dakota pickup?

The compact pickup truck market has been neglected by automakers, but on the heels of the new Chevrolet Canyon launch, a mid-sized Dodge pickup has been spied undergoing testing in Michigan.

The mule, which is heavily disguised, is reported by pickuptrucks.com to be based on a Fiat Strada, a small pickup made in Brazil.

“The prototype’s headlights are carefully camouflaged to hide their overall shape, but the units appear to be dead ringers for the headlights found on the Fiat Strada pickup. It may be that Fiat Chrysler plans to take an approach similar to what the firm has taken with the Ram ProMaster vans — by simply rebranding a Fiat Strada with a Ram grille and mildly revised front fascia,” pickuptrucks.com says. “This prototype, however, looks like it may have more adaptations in store for the North American market. This prototype looks to be fitted with a longer wheelbase and a more generous bed when compared to even the largest existing Strada model.”

The Strada, which is too small a truck for American buyers, will probably be upsized for the North American market. The Strada only has two doors, but the testing mule looks like it has four.

Ram/Dodge has not sold a compact pickup since it discontinued the Dakota in 2011.

Visit pickuptrucks.com to see photos of the camouflaged testing mule.

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