Ten years ago, the truck market was struggling due to rising gas prices, but all that has changed. Now everyone from construction workers to growing families are looking into purchasing a truck as their next vehicle, and the choices are widening.
The 2019 Ram 1500 is standing out from the crowd and seems to be garnering more praise. It may even be a threat to the beloved Ford F-150. So why is the Ram 1500 suddenly so special, and what’s the one feature that may prevent you from purchasing it? Motor Trend has the answers.
What you’ll like
In an attempt to outpace competitors like Chevy and Ford, the Ram 1500 was completely redesigned in 2019, and there’s a lot to love about it.
If you’re looking for something great on gas, then the Ram 1500 is it. Edmunds reports that it can get up to 22 mpg. If you’re traveling in the city, you’ll get an average of 20 mpg. For those who love traveling the highways, you’ll get 25 mpg.
The tech is pretty impressive as well. Not everyone cares about things like Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, but that number seems to be dwindling daily. Even diehards who believe that trucks are for work and not play can’t resist listening to their favorite music, and a large infotainment system that’s easy to use is hard to pass up.
Car and Driver reports that the Laramie, Longhorn, and Limited trims include a huge, vertically oriented screen perfect for listening to your favorite bands. There is also a navigation system to help find your way, as well as both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
The potential deal breakers
There probably isn’t a single vehicle ever designed that doesn’t have at least one drawback, and the Ram 1500 is no exception. So what is it?
According to Motor Trend, “Maximum towing capacity falls just short of the F-150.”
Is this really a big deal? Well, that depends entirely on you, and what you’re looking for in a truck. Let’s take a look at the nitty-gritty details.
U.S. News reports that the F-150 can tow an incredible 13,200 lbs. The Ram 1500 can tow up to 12,750 lbs, which is 450 lbs less. If you’re looking for a work truck, the answer is pretty easy. Even if you don’t plan on towing loads that weigh in excess of 12,750 lbs, there’s always those rare situations that require you to tow more than you expected.
On the other hand, if you’re looking for a good family vehicle, and the heaviest load you plan on towing is a new love seat and a group of hungry teenagers, a difference of 450 lbs isn’t going to mean much to you.
U.S. News also reports that the F-150 also has better safety features. For families who don’t care about towing rates, a higher safety rating might be the deciding factor for avoiding the Ram 1500.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) gave the 2019 F-150 high scores in its test rating, with the exception of the headlights.
In contrast, the 2019 Ram 1500 performed well in the IIHS crash test, but received a marginal score for the Ram’s ability to protect the passenger’s legs and a poor rating for its headlights.
IIHS actually did two crash tests on the Ram 1500, and stated, “In the first test, Fiat Chrysler identified possible prior dummy ankle damage that may have caused elevated injury measures on the left lower leg. In the second test with a new ankle assembly installed, there were also indications of elevated left lower leg injury. Therefore, the ratings are based on combined results from both tests.”
It’s important to note the 2020 Ram 1500 won the IIHS Top Safety Pick+, so if you’re set on a Ram 1500, then the 2020 might be a great pick for you.
Is it worth it
The Ram 1500 may not be perfect, but it still seems to be a solid vehicle worth considering for your next purchase, as long as you take into consideration its defects and decide if they’re deal-breakers for you.