By KBB.com Editors
Ford and Chevy pulled out their big guns in 2010, effectively matching or besting the latest Ram Heavy Duty pickups. Not to be upstaged, Ram once again moves the bar, this time by introducing a newly-improved Cummins diesel. The new High-Output 6.7-liter diesel engine produces an astonishing 800 pound-feet of torque and enables the Ram 3500 to tow up to 22,700 pounds. As heavy-duty pickups still account for nearly one-third of the growing full-size pickup market, the Ram Heavy Duty should continue to be a major player in Chrysler's recovery effort.
Can't fit a Mac truck in your garage? A Ram 3500 with the Cummins diesel is the next best thing.
Dollar for dollar, the Ram is every bit the equal of its Ford and Chevy counterparts. About the only reason we can think of not to go with the Ram would be due to a personal preference for one brand over another.
The 2011 Ram Heavy Duty gains two new trims: Laramie Longhorn and Outdoorsman. A more powerful engine lineup helps move the Ram's Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) to 22,000 pounds, while new standard features include a vehicle information center and electronic brake controller (SLT, Outdoorsman, Laramie and Power Wagon.) New options include a navigation radio and a factory spray-in bedliner.
Driving Impressions While we've taken a Ram Power Wagon off-road and even done some towing, the trip that impressed us most was when we did back-to-back comparisons between the 2011 Ram 2500 Crew Cab and its Chevrolet Silverado equivalent. Most agreed the Ram to be visually more attractive, but we were all stunned to discover how it was also head-and-shoulders above the Chevy in the areas of ride comfort, interior quiet and overall refinement. Although the 2500 lacks the new coil-spring rear found in the Ram 1500, the re-tuned suspension and fluid-filled hydro mounts at the rear of the cab do an impressive job of isolating the cabin from the road.
If bouncing around the farm in your Daddy's 1972 Dodge formed your opinion about how trucks should behave, you owe it to yourself to experience the smooth, comfortable ride afforded by the 2011 Ram Heavy Duty pickup trucks.
The 2011 Ram Power Wagon is an off-road beast. It's a Hemi-powered 2500 Crew Cab with electric-locking front and rear differentials, electronic disconnecting sway bar, Bilstein shocks, 32-inch tires, skid plates, 4.56 axle ratio for hill climbing and a 12,000-pound winch.
While we applaud Ram's use of higher-grade plastics and handsome trim, the best part of the 2011 Ram Heavy Duty's cabin space is the impressively long list of available features. Depending on the trim, the Ram HD can be equipped with heating elements for the steering wheel and rear seats, heated and ventilated front seats, power-adjustable foot pedals – the list goes on and on. The Ram HD's enormous center console can swallow a large laptop computer and a set of hanging files, while the rest of the cab offers cup holders, storage bins and electrical outlets galore. Mega Cab models feature reclining rear seats, while the Crew Cab models offer dual under-floor storage compartments.Exterior
The 2011 Ram Heavy Duty is available in three cab styles (Regular, Crew Cab and Mega Cab), two box sizes (6 feet 4 inches and 8 feet) plus single- and dual-rear-wheel configurations. The Ram HD is distinguished from the Ram 1500 by a notably larger grille and taller hood (with stamped louvers) and unique bumpers. When placed next to the next Ford and Chevy heavy duties, we still think the Ram is the most stylish of the three.
Standard feature highlights on a base-priced 2011 Ram Heavy Duty ST include air conditioning, tilt steering, six-speaker AM/FM/CD/MP3 audio system, plus front and side-curtain airbags. More basic features include manual windows/locks/mirrors, vinyl seats and black vinyl flooring.
The 2011 Ram HD is as tech-savvy as it is tough, with an options list that includes navigation, Bluetooth phone connectivity, Sirius Backseat TV (offering Nickelodeon, Disney Channel and Cartoon Network) , USB music connectivity, 30-gigabyte hard drive, 10-speaker Surround Sound, backup sensors and a backup camera (for easier trailer hook-ups). The Ram HD also offers an integrated trailer-brake as standard equipment on SLT, Outdoorsman, Laramie and Power Wagon.
About 90 percent of Ram HD buyers choose the Cummins Turbo Diesel, which is standard on the 3500, is offered with a choice of six-speed automatic or manual transmissions and includes the segment's only standard exhaust brake (we didn't get to properly evaluate the braking and stability advantages of the exhaust brake, but it sounded great). The new High-Output Cummins Turbo Diesel does not require diesel exhaust fluid and, although horsepower remains unchanged, delivers up to 40 more horsepower at cruising speeds than last year's engine. The lineup also comprises two 4x4 transfer cases (a manual unit standard on 4X4 ST and Power Wagon, an electric unit on all others) and four available axle ratios: 3.42, 3.783, 4.10 or 4.56.
5.7-liter Hemi V8
383 horsepower @ 5600 rpm
400 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 14/20 (2WD), 13/19 (4WD)
6.7-liter Cummins Turbo Diesel
350 horsepower @ 3000 rpm
800 lb.-ft. of torque @ 1600 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: N/A
By envelopo on Sunday, December 21, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 7,500overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "HD 6.4 hemi, towing stability, comfort, quiet, mpg"
Cons: "climate control, ram theme"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"Never thought I would buy a dodge but after checking out their latest offerings due to the need for a decent hd gas engine, I have the 6.4 Hemi Big Horn CCSB 4WD, air bag suspension. I bought this truck as a hd tow alternative to a diesel (due to reliability problems with todays govt. mandated diesel emissions). This truck delivers as a good hd tow platform, gets reasonable fuel mileage - averaging 14.5 and up to 19 at 70 on the highway. I tow an 8500 lb travel trailer and get 8.5 to 9. The rear air suspension helps the ride some, but not much. Overall the truck has been very reliable, the quality is very good, power is excellent even when towing (not as good as a diesel but that is to be expected). So far in 7000 miles I have had zero issues and have not had to return to the dealer. Pricing was excellent with the incentives available and the truck is packed with features. Connectivity is also outstanding. Overall I would recommend. The only things I dont like is the climate control buttons for temp (this should be a rotary knob) and the over the top big RAM theme."
37 people out of 69 found this review helpful
By Oscar1962 on Sunday, December 07, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 1,450overall rating 6 of 10rating details
Pros: "I like ram truck is fan to drive"
Cons: "The engine take too much gas not good"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8
"The only problem for mi is it takes lot of gas .i drive the truck all day and I spend $ 100 x day. Before a have a ram 1500 and it was very good on gas ,with the same engine the only difference was this truck had the economic system but for the cargo not good every day I put on the truck like 750 pounds my mistake was not to buy a diesel truck but now I have to buy one diesel truck ."
11 people out of 21 found this review helpful
By Bob on Sunday, November 23, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 11,250overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "Sits high, tows well, built to last forever."
Cons: "A bit rougn riding, tranny jerks sometimes."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"This Ram 2500 diesel is a truck designed for heavy work or towing, but it can double as a daily driver like I use mine. The two things I don't like about this truck are it's rather jarring ride, and the transmission, which seems to have a mind of its own sometimes. The shift pattern is poor, with a large jump into a high ratio from 4th into 5th and above, making it necessary to manually keep gears in a lower range by using the column mounted shift button while in town. Otherwise you'll find yourself tooling around town at 1,000 rpm, hardly enough to keep the soot filter clean. Other that, it's a magnificent truck, built for a lifetime of use. As for depreciation, it seems to hold its value better than most vehicles sold today, making it's high initial purchase price a bit more tolerable. My SLT Bighorn has almost every option I could want, except for auto climate control & ventilated seats. I think it's a great choice compared to the Laramie/Longhorn, which seems too highly priced to me and has few needed options above the Bighorn. BTW, if you tow a lot, this is the truck to do it with -- you'll never know your tow vehicle is there unless you look in the rear view mirror. Get your Ram today -- they seem to be going up about $4,000 a year -- but the 2014's are clearing out now with good discounts."
16 people out of 32 found this review helpful
By levi on Friday, September 26, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 6,822overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "Like it for the auxillary sound system"
Cons: "price is to high"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"This 2013 Ram 2500 ccb Cummins turbo diesel rides and drives better than any HD truck I have owned and it gets upwards of 19.5 to 20.5 on the freeway and secondary roads, and rides very good and is very responsive from the stop, or while traveling, have had no major issues, the only thing I do not like is the tpms and the reason for that is the low pressure light is always on because I do not and will not keep max pressure in the tires nor will I keep the 60 lbs front nor the 45 lbs rear tire pressure because the 80 lb rear is to high not loaded and the 45 lb light load for the same is way to low. 45 lbs wears the shoulders out and the 80 if not loaded wears the center out. The 60 lb front seems to be okay, but I change the tire pressure after a few thousand to try and keep the tire wear even all around, and the high pressure and the low pressure in the back can and does cause premature tire wear. I run anywhere from 50 to 60 lbs all around when not loaded and when loaded I run 70 or maybe a little more all around and that makes for better economy and tire wear. The big white ox I own is the best Ram I have ever owned. The oil being constantly black because of the oil making these new epa controlled diesels do is not good for the engine nor ... leave it at that, the Ram Cummins is still a very nice vehicle to drive and the interior , transmission are also good."
30 people out of 64 found this review helpful
By BirdDog on Wednesday, August 27, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 52,000overall rating 8 of 10rating details
Pros: "Performance & looks"
Cons: "Economy & space"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8
"Not the best with mileage, but it could be worse. It looks great, and I get a lot of compliments on it, more than any other vehicle, but it is large. Plenty of room, but it can be tough to park in the city. In the country, it rules, but in the city, it can be a challenge at times."
19 people out of 39 found this review helpful
By Mikey on Thursday, July 17, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 48,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "Everything about it"
Cons: "If I have too, the fact the rear seats don't fold"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"This is by far the best truck of the 13 I have owned. I usually buy a new truck every 18 months. I drive a lot of miles both country roads and highway. It is the best fuel mileage as well. I have a gas engine and have installed k & n and I average 18 mph highway 15.8 country/city. Very nice standard features. I have not had 1 issue with this truck. I used to drive Chevy, had issues that had to FIGHT Chevy for coverage, then switched to ford and got very good at replacing ball joints. Haven't touched this or my last Dodge. Last one had 60,000 miles with original tires, brakes etc."
43 people out of 74 found this review helpful