What was scheduled it appears to release in the fall of 1975 or early ’76, never did. Dodge was looking at producing a shortnose version of their new Bighorn. The truck was supposed to meet the new Anti-Skid Braking System laws coming out and the goal was to replace the 900 series Dodge hi-cab. The prototypes of the Shortnose Bighorn were based off of a hi-cab, with the hood of course being the major outward appearance change. The hood was a modified version of the existing Bighorn hood, with noticeable exterior changes, it was not an existing Bighorn hood cut down to fit. The advantage of this truck would have been the same as those of a swing out fender Dodges, plus the added bonus of more room under the hood for a larger motor and less of the motor in the cab.
From what we’ve gathered, there were less than 10 examples built in various engineering states. There is one example with a Cummins that is disassembled and is an early version based on cab configuration, etc. The other as shown in the picture above, a Detroit example and was built as it would have been sold. At one point we received a letter from Chrysler saying they never left the engineering board, though we today do know otherwise.
Dodge Truck Operations, Chrysler Motors Corp., Detroit, Mich., now has two Big Horns: the Big Horn 950 long conventional introduced in 1973 and — now for 1974 — the Big Horn 900 conventional.
Scheduled for production at Dodge’s Detroit Sherwood Truck Plant, the company says it will be available with wheelbase range from 134 in. to 212 in.; GVW range from 28,000 to 60,000 lb. With power ratings between 230 and 350 hp, engines available for the Big Horn 900 include Detroit Diesel Allison’s 6-71N and 8V-71N plus Cummins diesels NH 230, NTC 250, 270, 290 and 350.
Dodge Says the Big Horn 900 will meet all government regulations for airbrakes and noise control when introduced. The Big Horn 900 will have Rockwell-Standard’s Skid-Tool computerized brake control system, Dodge says. To help meet the brake regulations, Dodge added beefed up brakes, hubs and drums, increased power input to the brakes and suspension capacity.
To comply with BMCS interior noise regulations, Dodge includes improved insulation and seating, the company says. Insuring the Big Horn’s ruggedness and longevity, Dodge builds the 900 cab of heavy gauge reinforced steel, sets it on 110,000 psi straight frame rails and connects cross-members with grade-eight bolts, locknuts and large washers.
The 900, like the 950, has a forward tilting, reinforced fiberglass front end. The Big Horn ornament identifies the 900 and serves as a handle when tilting the front end. Under the hood, Dodge’s attention to serviceability is seen in a design that has all wires color coded for easy tracing through protective plastic tubing, supported by insulated chassis clips, and connected by bolt-eyelets. Electrical connections are gathered in two groupings. Five fusible links, circuit breakers and relays are positioned on engine compartment firewall and inside the cab on the back panel. Both groups are protected from dirt and grime with durable ABS plastic covers.
Inside the cab, a newly styled, integrated RCCC instrument panel and glove box are standard. Also standard is an interior trim molded of ABS plastic with insulated backing. Interior cab options include a high-line trim package with color keyed door trim panels, carpeting and soft, padded vinyl headliner inserts and back trim panel. Other options are integral air conditions, AM or AM/FM radio with twin speakers, tape deck, and power steering.