redesigned 2019 Ram 1500 Crew Cab 4x4 in Laramie trim is
powered by a 395-horsepower, 5.7-liter Hemi V-8 engine with an
eight-speed transmission. It rides as quiet as an SUV, is
finished like a luxury car, yet has heavy duty pickup truck
pickup truck question boils down to: How is it going to be used
every day? If youíve been on the losing end of the argument over
what youíre going to do with a pickup the 300-or-so days a year
when youíre not towing or hauling or helping, then the redesigned
2019 Ram 1500 is your counterargument.
third-best-selling vehicle in America behind the Chevy Silverado and
Ford F-150 rides as smooth as an SUV but with all the pickup
capability of a half-ton truck with a V-8 engine.
Itís the one
truck I wished I could hold onto longer. In recent weeks, Iíve
tested the outgoing Chevrolet Silverado and the Nissan Titan XD
turbo diesel. Ram 1500 shoppers shouldnít be cross-shopping either
of those vehicles, as the Titan XD is a heavy-duty workhorse and a
new 2019 Silverado is coming in the fall. But experiencing those
vehicles put into context the excellent balance of Ramís
5.7-liter Hemi V-8 engine doesnít sound or feel like a V-8 until
you want it to. With the windows up on the highway, it runs
crossover quiet, thanks in part to expanded active noise
cancellation and cylinder deactivation. Active grille shutters and
front air dam improve aerodynamics and fuel economy as well.
eight-speed transmission is supposed to be faster, and like the
outgoing model a gear plus-minus button on the steering wheel
overrides it into manual, if you want more low-end torque from a
stop or when towing or going downhill. But all these fuel saving
upgrades, including a reduction of 225 pounds in overall weight,
result in the same fuel economy of 17 mpg combined in the outgoing
model. We averaged closer to 18 mpg in about 60 percent highway
improvements are about more efficient capability. That
395-horsepower V-8 makes 410 pound-feet of torque, good enough to
tow at least 1,000 pounds more than the similarly equipped outgoing
fuel-efficient engine is due later this year as a mild-hybrid system
with a 48-volt battery that boosts torque up to 540 pound-feet of
torque (only $800 more). Then you can tow a whole house instead of
just the garage, I reckon; for now, the 11,340-pound towing
capability is already heavy-duty levels.
Ram says the
lightweighting has produced the 1500ís most powerful frame ever.
Yes, there are some aluminum elements in the tailgate and chassis,
but like the Ford F-150, Ram uses a high-strength steel frame, no
matter how Chevy wants to spin it.
It rides sooo
nice. A revised coil spring suspension soaks up road imperfections
and gets progressively stiffer as the payload increases to a maximum
of 2,300 pounds. It keeps the ride high and stable under heavy load,
yet soft and comfy when youíre riding solo. An air suspension with
five different heights is available for $1,795.
actually grew for 2019, with the wheelbase extending 4 inches, all
in the rear of the crew cab. The rear seats recline for a more
relaxing ride home, and they still flip up for a wide, secure cargo
berth. The doors opened wide enough for us to slide in a medium-size
dog crate 22 inches wide by 26 inches tall. Small underfloor lockers
provide extra security.
modern pickup trucks, the cab is padded in comfort, convenience and
advanced technology that might make some owners require passengers
to remove muddy boots. Laramie trim has leather everything,
including black bucket seats ($1,400) with silver stitching that was
subtle but sharp. Not the kind of thing you mind getting dirty, but
it would clean up real nice too. The wood trim pieces and wood
console panel made that longhorn Ram logo stand out even more.
stood the test of time as a simple system to use with good voice
command fidelity, and the 8.4-inch display is plenty for the back-up
camera, so I donít know if you need the available 12-inch touch
trim level also came with 20-inch wheels, helping to boost the
overall bigger, bolder profile started by the massive slotted
grille, which is available in six configurations. Our grille
effectively had seven slots branded with Ram. The styling is subtle
but attractive, nothing too showy or garish, though the gap between
the bed and the cap was huge. The tester did not have a side step,
which I would opt for, and Chevyís fender step is still the best
truck help in getting in and out of the bed. The Ramís fender
lowers so stepping up on it isnít too bad, but Chevyís is
The Ram 1500
makes a compelling argument over the Silverado and F-150. Compelling
enough to convince that skeptical spouse that this could be an
everyday all-purpose vehicle.
2019 Ram 1500
Laramie Crew Cab 4x4 at a glance
Half-ton pickup truck
$55,335 (excluding estimated $1,215 delivery)
Mpg: 15 city,
395-horsepower 5.7-liter HEMI V-8
Quiet, capable, excellent.