One of the best heavy duty trucks ever made.
By RamLover1952 on Wednesday, April 08, 2015
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 139,400
overall rating 9 of 10rating details
- Overall Rating
Pros: "Engine, Durability and reliability, confidence"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"1998.5 Dodge Ram 2500 (3/4 ton) Club Cab SLT Laramie 4WD with 5.9 Liter Cummins 24V turbo diesel and automatic transmission with 139K miles, 2 years old when my wife bought it . Started work on "restoring" this truck 5 years ago. It was my wife's daily driver when we first met, and was a leftover of her previous divorce many years ago. The general condtion of this truck wasn't bad, it just needed a little TLC. It has turned out to be a real labor of love. My then-new wife had also been using it at that time to tow a large (10K plus lbs.) toy hauler. It was twelve years old and the engine was rock solid then and nothing has changed in that regard. The straight six 5.9 liter (360 cubic inch) has been one of Cummins mainstays for many years and is very sought after still today for its incredible durability. I have heard from other long-time owners that they are over 500K miles and the engine is still going strong. The main weakspot in this drivetrain is the transmission. Four-speed auto with overdrive. When I took it to our best diesel shop here in the area (Albany/Corvallis, Oregon) they said the trans was just "tired" and needed an overhaul. $4,500 here has been a good investment. The only other major expenses so far have been an all-new rear-end (rear axle assembly, differential,etc.), new front-end tie tods, all new shocks and new total front brake job for about $2,500. I also put in an Edge performance chip kit and exhaust system, and the truck now dynos at just over 800 ft.lbs. of torque. Did some minor paint work on the front fenders (another thing to watch out for if you are thinking about buying a Ram of this genre), striping, new external plastic in several areas, new step bars, etc. The interior has held up incredibly well, Cloth interior even though this is a top-of-the-line Laramie edition, but the cloth still looks almost new. No cracks in the dash or signs of excessive anywear else. I did have the driver's side seat re-sewn as the area where you slide off the seat had worn through. Has held up great despite normal wear and tear. I use cleaner wax every three months and the paint still looks great. Would highly recommend that you do this. Another thing is that the gas mileage is so-so (maybe 10-12 MPG city and 16-18 HWY), even for a diesel, because the curb (almost empty) weight of this rig is over 7K pounds. This is not a typo. :) It is a beast, but perfect for towing our new 6,600 pound 31 foot travel trailer and loading up two 350 pounds each 250cc Scooters into the 8 foot long bed. In summary, if you can find one of these trucks in decent condition and are willing to put some reasonable money into it, you will have a sharp-looking, durable, reliabile, comfortable heavy duty pickup truck that will last you many more years of service and the pride that you have bought one of the best pickups ever built and save many thousands of dollars in the process. It would cost $60K now to replace this truck with a new one with the same equipment."
out of 7 found this review helpful
Was this review helpful to you?