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Let’s discuss the 2021 Ram 1500 TRX. When this pickup came on stage, Ram fans and critics alike hailed it a monster success. MotorTrend even named the 1500 TRX the 2021 MotorTrend Truck of the Year. However, there’s one significant drawback to owning this popular truck.

Recently, the 2021 Ram 1500 TRX went on an adventure with the MotorTrend team for some beefy, off-road canyon carving. The reports about this pickup’s fuel efficiency on that outing are downright dismal. This Ram got 5 mpg on its uphill excursion, which might deter fellow off-roaders from buying it.

Specs for the 2021 Ram 1500 TRX

If there’s one thing you’ll love about the 2021 Ram 1500 TRX, it’s the power. This tough, aggressive-looking pickup brings all the muscle with its 6.2-liter supercharged V8 engine capable of harnessing 702 horses. Additionally, the TRX comes with a unique suspension designed for both off and on-pavement comfort.

The Ram 1500 TRX offers a head-up display and an optional Trailer Reverse Steering Control. The tires are 35-inch all terrains, and there are five underbody skid plates, making it perfect for canyon carving and off-road fun. Furthermore, if you need to tow, the 1500 TRX is rated for up to 8,200 pounds. However, as Edmunds even pointed out in its initial review, the fuel economy ratings are only agreeable if you’re an oil executive.

How did the Ram 1500 TRX only achieve 5 mpg?

A black 2021 Ram 1500 TRX performance supercharged full-size pickup truck jumping off a dirt ramp
2021 Ram 1500 TRX | FCA

MotorTrend did make the 2021 Ram 1500 TRX its Truck of the Year. Still, even back then, the team was critical of this pickup’s fuel economy. On the sticker, the TRX has an EPA rating of 10 mpg in the city, 14 mpg on the highway, and 12 mpg combined. None of those rates are particularly impressive, considering the price hikes in gas since 2021. However, it gets worse.

In this recent trek, the 2021 Ram 1500 TRX went on a canyon-carving adventure. MotorTrend took it for a 27-mile spin, all uphill, to see how it would handle. When the truck returned, the digital dash display showed a reading of 5 mpg, which, as the team declared, “is absurd.”

When you really think about achieving less than 15 mpg in any driving scenario, it’s mind-boggling to realize how close you’ll need to live near a gas station. So, any off-roading adventure that lasts longer than MT’s 27-mile hike might require you to bring gas along with you.

The best fuel-efficient trucks out right now

With gas prices still lofting higher than consumers would like, fuel economy will matter even with beefy pickups. If the Ram 1500 TRX EPA ratings are deal-breakers for you, consider some of these other more fuel-efficient truck models. These still bring some power and performance, without the potentially single-digit mpg meter, according to MotorTrend.

  • 2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz AWD – 23 combined mpg
  • 2021 GMC Canyon 2WD Diesel – 23 combined mpg
  • 2022 Chevrolet Colorado 2WD Diesel – 23 combined mpg
  • 2022 Jeep Gladiator EcoDiesel – 24 combined mpg
  • 2022 Ford F-150 2WD Hybrid – 25 combined mpg
  • 2022 Ford Maverick FWD 2.0L Turbo – 26 combined mpg
  • 2022 GMC Sierra 1500 2WD Diesel – 26 combined mpg
  • 2022 Chevrolet Silverado 2WD Diesel – 26 combined mpg
  • 2022 Ram 1500 2WD EcoDiesel – 26 combined mpg
  • 2022 Ford Maverick Hybrid – 37 combined mpg

So, before buying that 2021 Ram 1500 TRX, consider one of these other pickup options. If off-roading is your jam and you need a monster V8, you’ll probably be willing to compromise on fuel economy ratings. Still, single-digit mpg is a bit ridiculous, especially when so many other pickups are earning better.


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