Fiat Chrysler Automobiles' Ram division launched the fifth generation of the Ram 1500 full-size pickup truck as a 2019 model. This truck was formerly known as the Dodge Ram until 2011, when its Chrysler parent company split Ram off into a brand separate from Dodge. There's also a Ram 1500 Classic model, the still-available previous-generation truck, which is covered in its own buyer's guide entry.
What's New / Key Changes from Last Year
Key among the Ram 1500's changes for the 2020 model year is a new EcoDiesel turbodiesel V6 engine. It displaces the same 3.0L as the engine it replaces but gains 20 hp and 60 lb-ft of torque for new totals of 260 hp and 480 lb-ft.
The balance of the updates consist of new and revised option packages.
Ram sells the 1500 in Tradesman, Big Horn, Sport, Rebel, Laramie, Longhorn and Limited trims. Engine choices include a 3.6L mild hybrid V6 that Ram calls eTorque; the new turbodiesel; and two versions of a 5.7L Hemi V8 -- one with the eTorque system and one without. Both V8s boast the same power output.
Ram 1500 comes in two four-door configurations. Quad Cab trucks have a 6-foot, 4-inch bed, while Crew Cab variants come standard with a 5-foot, 7-inch bed that can be optioned to the larger size.
Rear-wheel drive is standard, and four-wheel drive is available. All Ram 1500 models use an eight-speed transmission.
Ram 1500 Tradesman comes with 18-inch steel wheels, black grille, bumpers and door handles, cargo area lighting, automatic on/off headlights, heated side mirrors, black vinyl floor covering and vinyl seating, power door locks with keyless entry, tilt-and-telescopic steering column, cruise control, a 3.5-inch vehicle information centre, a 5.0-inch Uconnect infotainment touchscreen, two USB inputs, air conditioning, four-way front seat adjustments and a front bench seat.
Big Horn trim adds fog lights, carpeted flooring, cloth upholstery, a six-speaker stereo and front-seat centre cushion storage.
Rebel trim gets all-terrain tires, powder-coated bumpers, tow hooks, underbody skid plates, a Class IV receiver hitch, electronic locking rear differential, hill descent control and a sport hood.
Sport trim drops the Rebel's off-road goodies and gets 20-inch wheels, a dampened tailgate, LED headlights and taillights, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration, a 7.0-inch driver info centre, an 8.4-inch infotainment display, auto-dimming rearview mirror, a 115-volt power outlet, heated front seats and steering wheel, power-adjustable pedals, garage door opener, 12-way power driver's seat and power-folding side mirrors.
Laramie trim trades the all-terrain tires for all-seasons and adds chrome exterior trim, body-colour fender flares, a 10-speaker stereo, leather seating, a 12-way front passenger seat, ventilated front seats, passive keyless entry and dual-zone automatic climate control.
Laramie Longhorn gains a remote tailgate release, 20-inch wheels, bi-LED headlights with automatic high beams, a spray-in bedliner, navigation, front bucket seats, CD player, full-length floor console, heated and reclining rear seats, perforated wood-and-leather-trimmed steering wheel and rear underseat storage.
Finally, Limited trim gets blind spot monitoring with rear cross-path warning and trailer detection, four-corner air suspension, extra chrome exterior trim, 12-inch infotainment touchscreen, premium leather upholstery, and wireless smartphone charging. Limited also adds back the power-adjustable pedals, which are standard in Sport trim but not included in the Laramie packages.
Ram offers a surround-view camera in Sport, Laramie and Limited trims. Those trucks and the Rebel can also be optioned with forward collision mitigation and lane departure warning.
Adaptive cruise control is offered in Sport, Laramie and Limited. Sport and Rebel trims can be had with a Leather-and-Sound package that includes a 19-inch stereo and the 12-inch touchscreen.
As of this writing, Ram hadn't published 2020 model year fuel consumption figures for the 1500, but they should be similar to those for the 2019 model. The 3.6L eTorque engine is rated 11.9/9.4 L/100 km (city/highway) and 14.1/10.3 with the 5.7L eTorque V8 and 16.2/10.5 without eTorque.
Look for diesel consumption estimates to be under 12.0/9.0 L/100 km (city/highway).
The Ram 1500 competes with some of the biggest names in the auto industry, both literally and figuratively, going up primarily against the Ford F-150, Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra. Other full-size truck models include the Toyota Tundra and Nissan Titan.