Welcome to the Battle of the Badges, an arms race among pickups to adopt a logo capable of obscuring everything between the lights and the bumper. You may think we’re kidding, but Dodge announced at the Detroit auto show that the Ram-head logo on its namesake pickup is 250 percent larger than before. Asked if the badge had reached critical mass, designer Ralph Gilles chuckled: “It’s about there.”
Evidently, the competition knows no limits. Ford’s redesigned F-150 comes with a blue oval decked out in three-dimensional chrome trim. GM’s pickups sport titanic Chevy and GMC logos, and the Toyota Tundra and Nissan Titan badges don’t lack for impact either.
Who wins? Ruler in hand, we hit the floor in Detroit to investigate. Some ground rules: We calculated total size in area — length times height — with measurements to the nearest quarter-inch. We counted whichever badge was biggest, whether it was on the grille or the tailgate. Only half-ton, hard-working pickups need apply, so no Ford F-450s or International MXTs here. On principle — many principles, actually — we also disqualified the Cadillac Escalade EXT and Lincoln Mark LT. (Dissenters, the point is moot: Both trucks were AWOL in Detroit.)
Let the badge-nauseam begin.