Along with an all-new Chevrolet Silverado comes an all-new RAM 1500, both joining the latest Ford F-1500 in a fresh new round of the full-size pickup truck wars.
The new RAM 1500 is impressive on many levels, featuring a slew of innovations and a whole new level of style and refinement that should have even the Ford and Chevy boys applauding. Compared to the previous model, it is larger and roomier yet lighter and more fuel-efficient, more luxurious and high-tech, more capable and versatile, and — to our eyes — more attractive inside and out.
There is so much we can talk about, but here are some key takeaways:
- Though not as extensive as the new Siveraldo and especially the F-150, RAM’s half-tonne utilizes more aluminum components in its construction, featuring an aluminum tailgate and hood. Engineers also employed more high-strength steel, contributing to overall weight savings of 225 pounds (102 kg).
- The full four-door crew cab version of the truck is nearly 4 inches longer than the previous vehicle, with an extra 4.1 inches in its wheelbase that translates to more rear passenger legroom. Yes, like its competitors, the new RAM 1500 manages to be bigger yet lighter.
- Speaking of passengers, the interior is extraordinary for any car let alone a pickup truck, with an enormous 12-inch, Tesla-rivaling portrait-oriented touchscreen serving as the center console display and providing a large spread for the 360-degree camera and split-screen views. Cleanly integrated into the dashboard and complimented by slick toggle switches, the touchscreen alone makes everything look and feels high-tech and more premium and sophisticated than Ford and Chevy’s interiors.
- Other notable new features include a power tailgate that can be opened with the push of a button and a panoramic sunroof for an extra airy cabin.
- There is a surprise under the hood — the RAM 1500 is powered by a new ‘eTorque’ mild hybrid system centered around a 48-volt battery and a belt-drive motor generator unit that improves both fuel efficiency and output, adding up to 90 pound-feet of torque for the 3.6-liter V6 and up to 130 pound-feet for the 5.7-liter HEMI V8. That makes it a bona fide hybrid pickup truck tailored for the masses, the only one on the market.
- The Pentastar V6 is now rated at up to 305 horsepower and 269 pound-feet of torque, while the HEMI V8 makes a more potent 395 horsepower and 410 pound-feet. Both engines are paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission.
I don’t know about you, but I would jump at the opportunity to sit in one of theses and drive it while carrying a metric ton of junk in the bed. What do you think about the new RAM 1500?