Ram Heavy Duty

2015 Ram Heavy Duty

The 2015 Ram Heavy Duty pickups boast the highest tow ratings among one-ton pickups. Ram HDs offer more engine and transmission choices than competitors and a range of interiors from commercial-friendly to luxury.

The Ram 2500 (three-quarter ton) and Ram 3500 (one-ton) series were redesigned for the 2010 model year then were heavily revised for 2013, so changes for 2015 are minimal. Price changes are likewise minimal.

Maximum towing for the 2015 Ram 2500 is approximately 18,000 pounds and for the Ram 3500 it is 30,000 pounds; top payload approaches 4000 pounds for a Ram 2500 and 7320 pounds on Ram 3500. Like all full-size pickup trucks, the maximum tow rating and maximum load rating apply to different versions and not simultaneously. Rams payload numbers are fully competitive, the 3500s towing ability is literally tons better than challengers and only one pickup, an F-450, tows more. (Most HD pickups pulling a trailer rated for anything near their maximum load capacity may require some sort of drivers license beyond the norm or an endorsement.)

Chryslers 383-hp Hemi 5.7-liter V8 with 6-speed automatic is the standard powertrain; a CNG version is available but very limited. Rams 410-hp 6.4-liter Hemi is designed for regular unleaded fuel and has cylinder deactivation for lower light-load fuel consumption. Most models offer at least two powertrain choices, though Power Wagons come only with the 6.4-liter V8.

The 6.7-liter Cummins turbodiesel comes in three variants: 350-hp, 660 lb-ft with 6-speed manual; 370 hp, 800 lb-ft with 6-speed automatic; 385-hp, 865 lb-ft with 6-speed automatic on the MaxTow package.

Ram HD rides well and cruises quietly by heavy-duty pickup standards but you cant compare the ride to a car, nor noise from six tires, lots of airflow and trailer hardware. We found the Ram 2500 with rear air suspension rode quite comfortably empty or towing, while four-door Ram 3500s towed comfortably into the 28,000-pound range. As with most full-size pickups, the four-door crew cabs tend to ride more nicely and isolate from vibration better due to their longer wheelbase and better body mounts.

Equipment levels vary from the basic Ram Tradesmans rubber-vinyl coverings and crank windows to top trim levels with heated steering wheel, heated/ventilated front seats, driver memory system, configurable instrument cluster and text-to-voice infotainment systems. All cabs are roomy but the Ram MegaCab offers more cabin lounging space than any HD pickup.

The Ram Power Wagon comes only as a 2500 4WD gas-engine, but its offered in a couple of trim levels. Unique pieces include suspension, wheels, tires, differentials, winch and running height. Power Wagon does not tow or carry quite as much as a regular Ram 2500 can but more than most so-called off-road models and much more than any three-quarter-ton pickup. Its also the only vehicle sold in North America with a winch and a warranty.

Ram 2500 and Ram 3500 Heavy Duty models compete with Ford Super Duty, Chevrolet Silverado HD, and GMC Sierra HD pickups. Ram HD shares many interior elements and styling cues with Ram 1500 models, though they are not identical. Ram 3500 is also offered in a cab/chassis version, with straight frame rails and commercial intent just like the Ram 4500 and Ram 5500 series.

Ram HDs are a compelling choice for anyone in need of a heavy-duty pickup truck. Ram Heavy Duty models are an excellent choice for anyone pulling big travel trailers, multi-car race trailers, big boats or a stable of horses. They are a good choice for anyone who has work to do, be it hauling construction tools and materials or substituting for a medium-duty when a primary business rig is on downtime.


2015 Ram Heavy Duty

The 2014 Ram Heavy Duty models boast some of the highest tow ratings among pickups. Ram HDs offer five engine power ratings and a range of interiors from commercial-friendly to luxury.

The three-quarter ton Ram 2500 series receives the bulk of the changes for the 2014 model year. The 2014 Ram 2500 gets a new front suspension and a unique rear suspension. Ram 2500 offers rear air suspension while Ram 3500 offers rear air assist. Also new for 2014, a second Hemi gasoline V8 joins the lineup. Fleet and plow operators will appreciate the expansion of gasoline-power availability. The current-generation Ram Heavy Duty pickups began with the 2003 model year. 2010 brought revised styling and more refinement throughout. For 2013, headlamps and tail lamps were updated, chrome and power folding mirrors were added.

Maximum towing for the 2014 Ram 2500 is nearly 18,000 pounds and for the 2014 Ram 3500 it is 30,000 pounds; top payload approaches 4000 pounds for a Ram 2500 and is 7320 pounds on Ram 3500. Like all full-size pickup trucks, the maximum tow rating and maximum load rating apply to different trucks and not simultaneously. While Rams payload numbers are fully competitive, the 3500s towing ability is literally tons better than the challengers. (Most HD pickups pulling a trailer rated for anything near their maximum load capacity may require some sort of drivers license beyond the norm or an endorsement.)

Chryslers 383-hp Hemi 5.7-liter V8 with 6-speed automatic is the standard setup; a CNG version has limited availability. The new 6.4-liter 410-hp Hemi is designed for regular unleaded fuel and has cylinder deactivation for lower light-load fuel consumption. Most models offer at least two powertrain choices, though Longhorns are automatic only and Power Wagons are gas engine only.

The 6.7-liter Cummins turbodiesel comes in three variants: 350-hp, 660 lb-ft with 6-speed manual; 370 hp, 800 lb-ft with 6-speed automatic; 385-hp, 850 lb-ft with 6-speed automatic on the MaxTow package.

Ram HD rides well and cruises quietly by heavy-duty pickup standards but you cant compare the ride to a car, nor noise from six tires, lots of airflow and trailer hardware. We found the rear-air suspended Ram 2500 rode quite comfortably empty or towing, while four-door Ram 3500s towed comfortably into the 28,000-pound range. As with most full-size pickups, four-door cabs better body mounts and a longer wheelbase help ride quality and isolation.

Equipment levels vary from the Ram Tradesmans rubber-vinyl coverings and crank windows to Ram Laramies heated steering wheel and rear seats, heated/ventilated front seats, driver memory system, configurable instrument cluster and text-to-voice infotainment systems. All cabs are roomy but the Ram MegaCab offers more cabin lounging space than any HD pickup.

(The 2014 Ram Power Wagon will be a late introduction. Expect the new suspension design to be taller than a standard 2014 but just as flexible as the previous Power Wagon. Were expecting gas-engine only.)

Ram 2500 and 3500 Heavy Duty models compete with Ford Super Duty, Chevrolet Silverado HD, and GMC Sierra HD pickups. Ram HD shares many interior elements and styling cues with Ram 1500 models, though they are not identical.

Ram HDs remain a compelling choice for anyone in need of a heavy-duty pickup truck. Ram Heavy Duty models are an excellent choice for anyone pulling big travel trailers, multi-car race trailers, big boats or a stable of horses. They are a good choice for anyone who has work to do, be it hauling construction tools and materials or substituting for a medium-duty when a primary business rig is on downtime.


2013 Ram Heavy Duty

The 2013 Ram Heavy Duty models, the 2013 Ram 2500 and 2013 Ram 3500, have reset the bar for pickup truck towing and further advanced the luxury heavy-duty pickup.

Changes applied to all 2013 Ram HDs include three different ratings for the updated Cummins diesel engine and cooling systems, a new transmission, minor exterior cosmetic changes, a heavily revised interior and electronics package, and two rear camera options. 2013 Ram 3500 trucks get a new frame and front suspension arrangement.

The changes for 2013 have netted Ram a maximum towing limit of 30,000 pounds, more than 6,000 pounds greater than their GM and Ford counterparts; a 2013 Ram 3500 Crew Cab 4WD dually will tow at least two tons more than an F-450 Crew Cab 4WD, its nearest competitor. The Ram 3500 tows like a medium-duty truck in a pickup wrapper.

Chryslers 383-hp Hemi 5.7-liter V8 with 6-speed automatic is the standard setup. Most models offer at least two powertrain choices, though Longhorns are automatic only and Power Wagons are gas engine only.

The 6.7-liter Cummins turbodiesel comes in three variants: 350-hp/660 lb-ft with 6-speed manual; 370/800 with 6-speed automatic; and 385/850 with 6-speed automatic on the MaxTow package. 2013 Ram pickup diesels require diesel exhaust fluid, or DEF, aka urea, typically refilled at oil change interval but easy for the owner to add and available at parts stores and fuel depots.

Fuel economy for the 2013 Ram HD models appears to be up 15 percent to 20 percent over 2012 models.

Ram HD rides well and cruises quietly by heavy-duty pickup standards but you cant compare the ride to a car, nor noise from six tires, lots of airflow and trailer hardware. We found a Ram 2500 rode quite comfortably with 800 pounds in the bed, and four-door cabs towed comfortably into the 28,000-pound range. As with most full-size pickups, four-door cabs better body mounts and a longer wheelbase help ride quality and isolation.

Equipment levels vary from the Ram Tradesmans rubber-vinyl coverings and crank windows to Ram Laramies heated steering wheel and rear seats, heated/ventilated front seats, driver memory system, configurable instrument cluster and text-to-voice infotainment systems. All cabs are roomy but the MegaCab offers more cabin lounging space than any HD pickup.

The most capable Ram HD pickup will carry nearly 7000 pounds of cargo, the least capable Power Wagon around 1600 pounds. Gas-engine tow ratings have improved, approaching 14,000 pounds, and the only towing statistic where the competition has an edge is in maximum tow-behind (as opposed to fifth-wheel or gooseneck), and were not fond of pulling 18,000 pounds on a tow ball. Most HD pickups pulling a trailer rated for anything near their maximum load capacity may require some sort of drivers license beyond the norm or an endorsement.

The Ram 2500 and 3500 Heavy Duty models compete with Ford Super Duty, Chevrolet Silverado HD, and GMC Sierra HD pickups. Ram HD shares many interior elements and styling cues with Ram 1500 models, though they are not identical.

Ram HDs remain a compelling choice for anyone in need of a heavy-duty pickup truck. Ram Heavy Duty models are an excellent choice for anyone pulling big travel trailers, multi-car race trailers, big boats or a stable of horses. They are a good choice for anyone who has work to do, be it hauling construction tools and materials or substituting for a medium-duty when a primary business rig is on downtime.


 

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