Consumer Reports only recommends one full-size truck, and it says the hybrid version is the one to get. What truck is that? The Ram 1500 is the only truck that Consumer Reports recommends and said the mild-hybrid eTorque V8 option is the one to grab.
Why the Ram 1500?
Ram completely redesigned the 1500 trucks in 2019. Since that refresh, which lightened the truck and added some more aggressive bodywork, it’s won several awards. Consumer Reports isn’t the only magazine to like the truck: It won Motor Trend’s Truck of the Year awards for 2019, 2020 and 2021. Consumer Guide named the updated truck a Best Buy.
The Rivian R1T won Motor Trend’s Truck of the Year award in 2022, but good luck finding one. Rivians may be fast, smooth, and fully electric, but they’re also rare and expensive. At least for now.
What is the eTorque option on the Hemi?
The Ram 1500 truck comes standard with the 3.6-liter V6 that makes a healthy 305 horsepower. But, you can order the 5.7-liter Hemi, and the 5.7-liter with the eTorque mild hybrid system that Consumer Reports recommends for this truck. The eTorque is an electric-assist that helps the truck make an additional 130 lb-ft of torque and helps fuel economy. That extra torque is available from a stop and helps the truck accelerate a little bit quicker than the non-hybrid version.
The 1500 TRX, famously, has one engine option: the supercharged 6.2-liter V8 with 702 horsepower. It is, at least until the expected Ford Raptor R comes out, the most powerful mass-produced truck you can buy.
You can order the 3.0-liter diesel in the Ram 1500
While most who want diesels will look towards the Ram 2500 HD and its monster I6 Cummins diesel, you can order a 3.0-liter turbodiesel in the Ram 1500. The smaller diesel is the same as that in the Jeep Gladiator and Wrangler. With the diesel engine, the Gladiator is transformed and is the fastest version of the truck. However, in the Ram 1500, its 260-horsepower and 480-lb.-ft of torque aren’t a huge improvement over the V8.
What are the Ram 1500 trim levels?
The Ram comes in several trims, starting with the 1500 and Ram 1500 Classic. The trims include the Tradesman, Limited, Limited Longhorn, Rebel, Laramie, and Big Horn. The Classic can be ordered as a Tradesman, Express, or Warlock trims. They’re all included as Consumer Reports’ best truck. The Laramie and Big Horn can be outfitted as luxury trucks, while the Rebel is an off-road biased version. The Limited Longhorn trim includes wood trim, including on the steering wheel, that gives it a straight-off-the-ranch feel. Ram 1500 Tradesman starts at $36,500, while the luxury Limited Longhorn starts at $57,970.