At a recent event in Nashville, Ram launched its new 2013 line-up of trucks. The new truck will be offered in 11 models/packages: Outdoorsman, Express, SLT, Big Horn, Lone Star, Outdoorsman, Sport R/T, and Laramie Longhorn.
After several days of driving the Ram 1500, I can assure you that this new pickup may well leave Ford F-150, Chevrolet Silverado, GMC Sierra, Nissan Titan, and Toyota Tundra covered in dust and relegated to the slow lane or bar ditch.
The Ram 1500 is scheduled for production the third quarter of 2012 at the Saltillo Truck Assembly Plant in Saltillo, Mexico.
The new 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine and class-exclusive 8-speed TorqueFlite 8 transmission with variable-valve timing offers 305 hp, 269 lb-ft of torque, and best-in-class fuel economy for V-6 trucks at 25 mpg combined travel.
Also, the standard V-6 delivers best-in-class towing at 5,630 pounds. The starting price will be $23,585 which includes the $995 destination charge.
Or you may prefer the legendary 5.7-liter Hemi V-8 with fuel cylinder shut-off and VVT, providing 395 hp, 407 lb-ft torque, and best-in-class in fuel economy for V-8 trucks.
Ram engineers designed the outside of the 1500 around the grille, which is the same overall width but approximately one inch taller within the new upper fascia panel, giving a more integrated appearance than previous models. This allows the classic crosshair and vertical grille bars to become flush at the top of the grille surround.
When the active grille shutters are closed, air flow is redirected over and around the front of the truck, enhancing performance rather than creating turbulence in the engine compartment.
Engine coolant temperature and vehicle speed determine shutter position. The shutter remains closed when less engine cooling is required and the aerodynamic drag is most significant. The system will open the shutters when the truck cooling demands require additional airflow, such as traveling uphill or pulling in high-temperature environments like Texas in the summer or barren areas of the Southwest.
A new bumper design supports the new vertically oriented fog lamps for improved light spread, distance, and more lumens. A larger opening around the front tow hooks allow for easy access to the hooks.
When this sweetheart truck makes a run your way, you may well be reminded of the mysterious and magic train in the Harry Potter books that whisked the young witches and wizards to Hogwarts.
Portions of the 1500’s frame are “hydroformed for dimensional accuracy,” helping to maintain overall strength and durability. The new standard front independent suspension combines redesigned upper control arms and aluminum lower control arms for improved responsiveness and handling.
The new Ram offers a redesigned interior with creative features and technologies, and material upgrades. New interior themes and colors are introduced as well.
The new generation of UConnect system turns the interior space into an entertainment center. Higher versions of UConnect are equipped with a 5” (R2) or an 8” (R3 and R4) touchscreen.
The Ram 1500 is beautiful on the inside. Ample-siazed luxury seats in front and back make for grand comfort, while larger knobs on the console make it easy to use the radio and control cabin temperature. A large bin between the front captain seats and inside doors provide tremendous amounts of storage space.
The Ram 1500 offers more than 45 safety and security features, such as six air bags including multi-stage driver and front passenger air bags, and seat-mounted side pelvic-thorax air bags.
Hill-start assist, anti-lock brake system, keyless entry system with push button start, and LED turn signals and marker tail lights are some more features to keep in mind.
The 2013 Ram 1500 is backed by a 5-year/100,000 mile power train limited warranty. In addition, the standard 3-year/36,000 mile basic limited warranty provides bumper to bumper coverage for the Ram 1500, from the body to the electrical system.
“What started as a mild refresh of the Ram 1500 quickly rolled into a best-in-class fuel economy and best-in-class capability gem,” said Fred Diaz, president and CEO Ram Truck Brand.
“Customers are going to experience an entirely new truck with technology and features not offered anywhere else.”
Durhl Caussey writes an auto column read around the world. He may be reached at this paper or email@example.com
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