Ram Trucks Heritage: 1973 D200 Club Cab Pickup

Ram Trucks Vintage Photo Friday | Part IV (1961-1976)

You might never know it looking at this 1973 D200—the innovation has become so commonplace today—but when it was introduced just the year before, this pickup boasted a new type of body style that changed the truck market forever.

Before 1972, pickup buyers could choose between two traditional cab styles: the conventional two-door style with a single seat for two or three passengers, and the four-door, six-passenger style that is often known as a crew cab. These two styles were adequate for most commercial purposes, but they weren’t a great fit for the growing trend of pickups for personal use—commuting, shopping, recreation.

That all changed when Dodge introduced a new, third choice called the Club Cab. Body designers added extra space between the seat and the rear wall of the cab, along with a pair of stylish quarter windows for extra visibility. The additional room provided space for a side-facing jump seat or 34 cubic feet of storage volume for personal gear.

With the Club Cab, tools and luggage didn’t have to be stored outside in the bed or thrown on the front seat. Gear could be stowed inside the cab, behind the seat, where it was dry, secure, and easily accessible. Dodge advertising described the Club Cab as “the pickup with the hip pocket.”

The Club Cab became a popular feature on Dodge Ram pickups, and it has its parallel today in the Quad Cab body style offered in the current Ram Trucks lineup. The Quad Cab is extended in the manner of the original Club Cab, but it’s considerably roomier and also includes a rear door on each side for ease of passenger entry.