Hot on the heel of the new Silverado’s unveiling, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles took the wraps off the all-new, 2019 RAM 1500 at the 2018 North American International Auto Show, ushering in a new generation of the truck wars.
Like Chevy’s half-tonne pickup, the new RAM 1500 is an improvement over its predecessor in virtually every way, shape or form. It is larger and roomier yet lighter and more fuel-efficient, more luxurious and high-tech, more versatile, and — if you were to ask us — more attractive inside and out. It also tows more.
A nearly four-inch longer length gives it more interior volume, while the increased use of high-strength steel and aluminum components, including high-strength steel frame, an aluminum tailgate and hood, and composite upper control arms, make it 225 pounds lighter.
A new ‘eTorque’ mild hybrid system centered around a 48-volt battery and a belt-drive motor generator unit improves both fuel efficiency and output, adding up to 90 pound-feet of torque for the 3.6-liter V6 and up to 130 pound-feet for the 5.7-liter HEMI V8.
The Pentastar V6 now produces 305 horsepower and 269 pound-feet of torque, while the HEMI V8 is rated higher at 395 horsepower and 410 pound-feet. Both engines are mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission.
A diesel engine will eventually be added and possibly even a turbocharged four-cylinder.
The redesigned RAM 1500 is lower and wider, giving it a more refined and slightly sportier appearance. Unlike the Silverado, the overall styling doesn’t deviate too much from before, though RAM’s designers ditched some of the blunt, big-rig character that defined the previous generations for a handsomer and even classier look. The trademark crosshair grille is gone as a result.
The smoother proportions along with a .357 drag coefficient and active grille shutters enhance the truck’s aerodynamic efficiency, which FCA claims is best-in-segment.
One of the biggest highlights and likely a major selling-point of the new RAM 1500 is the optional 12-inch Uconnect touchscreen that spans the entire center stack, providing a large spread for the 360-degree camera and split-screen views. Rear seat passengers benefit from more legroom in the full four-door crew cab version, while Air suspension contributes to a cozier on-road ride as well as load leveling and off-road capabilities.
Overall material quality is up, and naturally, a broad range of safety and convenience technology is available.
Is the new, 2019 RAM 1500 refreshing or revolting, and how do you think it compares to the latest Chevrolet Silverado and Ford F-150? Share you thoughts in the comments below.