By KBB.com Editors - Updated Date: 3/30/2011
Although in the past Dodge did not own a substantial portion of the full-size truck market, its Ram pickups retained a fiercely loyal fan base and offered some of the most outlandish full-size models on the market (think Ram SRT10). The Ram brand is now its own division, although the trucks are still sold and serviced through Dodge dealers. With clever marketing tools, distinctive styling and innovative features, Ram hopes its 1500 line will continue chipping away at rivals Chevrolet Silverado, Ford F-150 and Toyota Tundra.You'll Like This Car If...
If you like the rugged image of a tough-as-nails working truck, but not the harsh ride or crude interior that accompanies it, check out the 2011 Ram 1500. Its "big-rig" inspired styling is mighty impressive, as is its available Hemi V8 engine.You May Not Like This Car If...
If you're the type that likes a pickup that can be beaten, dented and scratched, the 2011 Ram 1500's highly stylized exterior may be too pretty for you to risk ruining at the job site.What's Significant About This Car?
For 2011, Ram introduces a new 1500 Tradesman series. Aimed at small-business owners, the Tradesman is packed with commonly-requested features but at a price that easily fits today's tight budgets. Also new are the Laramie Longhorn and Outdoorsman editions. New features for the Ram 1500 include power folding mirrors, a factory spray-in bedliner and a new Garmin navigation radio.Driving It Driving Impressions
In the area of overall driving comfort the 2011 Ram 1500 has a distinct advantage over its competitors, thanks in part to its coil-spring rear suspension. Because most pickup trucks employ a leaf-spring rear setup, they tend to ride more harshly and can develop bounding motions over bumps. This is not the case for the Ram 1500, which can quickly control bouncing motions and help smooth out the ride over harsh or uneven surfaces. Beyond its smoother ride, however, the Ram 1500 still behaves very much like a full-size body-on-frame vehicle, so don't expect this big truck to drive, stop or steer like a standard sedan. Although the Ram 1500's steering is reasonably direct and the brakes are easy to modulate and control, the body still suffers from noticeable lean when rounding sharp curves.Favorite Features
The RamBox storage system is offered on the Crew Cab. It includes 3.7 cubic feet of lockable, drainable storage space in each bed rail, as well as a cargo-bed divider that doubles as a bed extender. The RamBox also comes with a bed-rail system with sliding, adjustable cleats to tie down and secure various types of loads.
The Uconnect GPS system's 30-gigabyte hard drive holds song and picture files, as well as navigation map information. Songs can be ripped from a CD or downloaded from a thumb drive via a USB port. The hard drive lets you keep your whole music collection in the vehicle without toting a lot of CDs.