Now in its fifth generation, the Ram 1500 has traditionally lagged behind the Chevrolet Silverado and Ford’s F-Series trucks when it comes to sales. However, recent changes to the truck may cause more people to consider choosing it. MotorTrend recently drove the 2019 Ram 1500 and had some surprising things to say about it. Let’s take a look at what MotorTrend liked most about it, as well as their predictions for the vehicle’s future.
Top Feature: eTorque V8 engine
MotorTrend compared the Ram’s eTorque V6 and V8 engines. These engines are “mild hybrids” that rely on smaller electric starter generators and a 0.43 KW-hr battery to provide torque assist. This added torque-assist means that the eight-speed automatic transmission does not need to downshift while cruising.
MotorTrend’s test drivers were especially impressed with the V8 eTorque engine, which they claimed felt smooth and powerful even while towing. And while they were also impressed with the eTorque V6, they felt it needed more low-end torque. Between the two, the V8 eTorque was the clear winner and even proved more powerful than the regular V8 engine.
Currently, Ram makes eTorque technology available on its 305 hp 3.6 liter V-6 engine as well as its 395 hp 5.7 liter V-8. Scott Evans, one of MotorTrend’s features editors, said that “I find the eTorque drivetrain a bit smoother through the revs and shifts and when accelerating up steep grades.” The 2019 Ram 1500 with eTorque technology comes with a maximum payload of 1,920 lbs. and a maximum of 395 hp.
Second most popular: improved, high-quality interiors
The second thing MotorTrend found most appealing about the Ram 1500 was what they called “high quality interiors across the line.” Beginning in 2019, better interiors are available on all Ram trim models from the Tradesman to the Limited. The refresh has been touted by Ram as “redefining what a truck can be.”
On the 1500 classic, you can enjoy comfortable seating that includes plush, leather trim and multiple ways to adjust. The truck also has advanced technology features such as the Uconnect® 4C navigation system. Ram offers what it has deemed a “command center”, which includes an 8.4-inch touch screen, 4G LTE wireless Internet hotspot, Apple CarPlay support, HD radio and a host of other features.
The latest Ram also features an upgraded instrument panel. The seven-inch, high definition display allows drivers to customize their own digital instrument cluster to better suit their own needs. Upgraded benefits include color displays for greater visibility. Recognizing that many still consider the Ram a work truck, there are numerous storage compartments where you can secure tools, flashlights, or other gear while keeping them within easy reach.
Although it didn’t top the list, MotorTrend’s judges did rave about the 1500’s “handsome, aerodynamic sheet metal.” In marketing the truck, Ram promotes its “high strength steel frame”, which adds to the overall appearance of the truck and provides it with advanced safety and security.
MotorTrend remarked that the fifth-generation Ram “does a fantastic job of staying true to the 1500’s heritage while still keeping an eye toward the future.” In particular, they claimed that Ram had implemented a “holistic approach to improving performance and fuel economy.” They were also impressed with the redesigned interior, which they felt could even make loyal owners of other brands consider switching. The latest Ram does a great job of combining ruggedness, durability, and power along with comfort and style. Those who thought they had to sacrifice comfort or a smooth driving experience to enjoy great hauling and towing power will be pleasantly surprised.