Versions: ST, SLT, Laramie
- 2500, three-quarter-ton, single rear wheel (SRW)
- 3500 one-ton, single rear wheel (SRW)
- 3500 one-ton, double rear wheel (DRW)
- 2500 - Reg. Cab Short Box SRW, 2500 Quad Cab Short Box SRW, 2500 Quad Cab Long Box SRW
- 3500 - Reg. Cab Long Box DRW, Quad Cab Short Box SRW, Quad Cab Long Box SRW, Quad Cab Long Box DRW
Vehicle Category: Full-Size Pickup Truck
Engine Location: Front Engine
- 5.7-liter, Single Overhead Cam, V-8 cylinder HEMI, 345-horsepower at 5,400 rpm and 375 lb-ft torque at 4,200 rpm
- 8.0-liter, Single Overhead Cam, V-10 cylinder, 305-horsepower at 4,000 rpm and 440 lb-ft torque at 2,800 rpm
- 5.9-liter, Single Overhead Cam, Inline-6 cylinder Turbodiesel Cummins, 250-horsepower at 2,900 rpm and 460 lb-ft torque at 1,400 rpm
- 5.9-liter, Single Overhead Cam, Inline-6 cylinder Turbodiesel Cummins, 305-horsepower at 2,900 rpm and 555 lb-ft torque at 1,400 rpm
Fuel Economy (city/hwy): Trucks do not receive EPA fuel economy testing. Miles Per Gallons will be very low.
Competition: Chevrolet Silverado HD, Ford F-250 Super Duty, Ford F-350 Super Duty
SANTA YNEZ, California -- First, understand that the descriptive label "Heavy Duty" applies to a series of big and powerful work trucks developed by DaimlerChrysler for the upward expansion of Dodge's line of Ram trucks.
These behemoths are huge vehicles designed expressly for truck-type work, like toting loads of two-by-four lumber, towing a big trailer teeming with horses or hauling hay up to the high pastures.
Constructed on a strong new chassis that's modular in design to allow multiple configurations for cabin size and box length, heavy-duty Ram trucks dominate the road with their forceful new exterior styling as they also flex muscles from a new series of powerful engines designed to pull far more than their hefty weight and tow some class-topping loads.
The collection of heavy-duty Ram trucks consists of two different weight designations with 2500 (three-quarter-ton) and 3500 (one-ton) series.
Cabs conform to a two-door Regular Cab with split bench seat and a four-door Quad Cab with two rows of seats for as many as six passengers.
Beds in back extend in lengths of long and longer.
Park a Ram 3500 next to the conventional Ram 1500 (half-ton) and you'll get the big picture: The heavy-duty Ram towers over the 1500 -- it's so tall that the full-size 1500 Ram looks like a compact-class version of the 3500.
Yet the family resemblance is quite obvious.
Styled with a bold exterior form for the chin-forward face, big Ram looks strong and assertive -- and impossible to miss, should the image of one suddenly appear in your rearview mirror.
A massive prow dominates the design with the stair-step hood of a big-rig Peterbilt and a flat-faced horse-collar grille thrust forward and marked in cross-hair chrome.
More chrome underscores the grille on a fat-lip bumper etched with round foglamps at both ends.
Flanks are flat but on Ram 3500 with dual rear-wheels (DRW) the back fenders bulge to cover those extra tires.
On top of the high cab, five amber running lamps add a menacing touch that actually works for safe motoring to enhance the truck's visibility on the road at night.
Passive safety equipment on Ram reaches beyond two frontal air bags to three-point safety belts for all seats, including three sets in the Regular Cab and six in the Quad Cab, plus sets of tether anchors in the rear of the four-door for installing a child's safety seat. Also, side curtain-style air bags in the first application for a heavy-duty truck are offered for both cabin sizes.
The structural system of Ram was redesigned for these new issues, beginning with a ladder-type chassis that contains boxed rail sections shaped through hydroforming, a process that creates a strong and rigid platform.
Suspension and steering systems vary, depending on applications for rear-wheel two-wheel-drive (2WD) or four-wheel-drive (4WD) mechanisms.
For 4WD -- which out-sells 2WD units among heavy-duty trucks -- the front suspension consists of quad-link arms and track bar with coil springs, gas-charged shocks and a new front beam axle measured at 5200 pounds for the gross axle weight rating (GAWR).
For the 2WD Ram, the independent short-and-long arm design has new suspension geometry for greater movement, and there are links to coil springs and gas-charged shocks.
The rear suspension, common to both 2WD and 4WD Rams, consists of longitudinal leaf springs with gas shocks and an auxiliary leaf added to the 3500 for heavier payloads and increased towing demands. New rear axles work to achieve higher gross vehicle weight ratings (GVRW), which culminate at 12,000 pounds for a diesel-powered Ram 3500 4WD.
Steering system for the 2WD Ram becomes a rack and pinion mechanism, rarely seen under the hood of a truck. It produces quick and predictable turns with direct response from the steering wheel.
For the 4WD Ram, the recirculating ball system was reworked to yield more precise tolerances. As a result, it brings a better on-center feel and responds faster due to a quicker steering ratio.
Brakes use huge discs at all wheel posts, with ties to a computerized anti-lock brake system (ABS).
Regarding powertrains, new heavy-duty Ram packs more than one punch. Choices begin with a new heavy-duty rendition of a fabled Chrysler HEMI engine design.
The HEMI Magnum 5.7-liter V8 develops 345-hp at 5,400 rpm and 375 lb-ft of torque at 4,200 rpm. That muscle is distributed through either a manual five-speed transmission or new automatic five-speed.
Even more cylinders are available with the repeating 8.0-liter V10, good for 305-hp at 4,000 rpm and 440 lb-ft of torque at 2,800 rpm. Here transmissions consist of the manual five-speed or a four-speed automatic.
And Dodge adds awesome diesel power through an optional 5.9-liter in-line-six Cummins Turbodiesel that delivers up to 305-hp at 2,900 rpm and 555 lb-ft of torque at only 1,400 rpm to rank as most powerful in the hefty league with class-leading towing weight capability of 23,000 pounds.
The diesel connects to a new six-speed manual or the four-speed automatic.
We drive the new heavy-duty Ram trucks with all three engine options and a variety of heavy loads aboard, following a series of pavement and off-road routes wound around the Santa Rita Hills and Santa Ynez Mountains west of Santa Barbara.
Our seat-time experience reveals trucks equipped with more than enough muscle to power through any type of truck-tough chore, plus they seem smooth in suspension ride and downright easy to operate.
Three levels of trim work for the new trucks with a base ST, upgraded SLT and deluxe Laramie edition.
Preferred equipment standard in all includes items like air conditioning and intermittent windshield wipers. The Quad Cab version adds storage bays located below the floor and under the flip-forward rear seat.
Ram 3500 Laramie carries premium gear such as leather upholstery, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and power windows, mirrors and door locks.
Equipment packages are also available for special functions, such as towing.
Where Built: Mexico and the USA
- 2500 and 3500 regular cab with long bed - 3
- 2500 and 3500 extended cab with short bed - 6
- 2500 and 3500 extended cab with long bed - 6
Number of Rows:
- 2500 and 3500 regular cab with long bed - 1
- 2500 and 3500 extended cab with short bed - 2
- 2500 and 3500 extended cab with long bed - 2
Crash Test Ratings: These vehicles are not tested by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration or the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety as they are supposed to be used only for work purposes and driven at very low speeds.
Length in Inches:
- 2500 and 3500 regular. cab with long bed - 229.7
- 2500 and 3500 extended cab with short bed - 227.7
- 2500 and 3500 extended cab with long bed - 249.7
Warranties: 3 years/36,000 miles bumper-to-bumper, 5 years/100,000 miles corrosion, 7 years/70,000 mile powertrain, 3 years/36,000 miles free Roadside Assistance.
Weight in Pounds:
- 2500 and 3500 regular. cab with long bed - 5,322
- 2500 and 3500 extended cab with short bed - 5,521
- 2500 and 3500 extended cab with long bed - 5,654
Towing Capacity in Pounds:
- 2500 - 13,850
- 3500 with single rear-wheel - 16,000/LI>
- 3500 with dual-rear wheels - 15,350
Maximum Cargo Capacity
- 2500 and 3500 regular cab with long bed - 3,330
- 2500 and 3500 extended cab with short bed - 3,280
- 2500 and 3500 extended cab with long bed - 3,150
Gas Tank Capacity in Gallons:
- 2500 and 3500 regular. cab with long bed - 35
- 2500/3500 extended cab with short bed - 34
- 2500/3500 extended cab with long bed - 35
Destination Charge: $795