Ram: What Is the Difference Between Quad and Crew Cab?

​Are you considering a new Ram truck? If so, it’s hard to go wrong with one of the most dependable trucks on the market. The 2021 Ram 1500 TRX won MotorTrend’s Truck of the Year, among other accolades. When reviewing the various features and options, you’ll come across the terms Quad Cab and Crew Cab, which will make a difference in comfort, cargo room, and price. What exactly do these two terms mean?

The pickup potential of a Ram truck

Ram logo against a stained wood background.
Ram logo | Getty Images

Before examining the cabin stylings of the Ram truck, it’s essential to know the main differences between the Ram 1500, 2500, and 3500. Each has different passenger and cargo-hauling capabilities. And the most expensive versions can set you back a pretty penny, so you should be clear about your transportation needs and which variant can help you achieve the best.

The 1500 is a light-duty truck and is ideal for relatively light cargo hauls and regular driving. The 2021 base model comes with a 3.6-liter V-6 that produces 305 hp and 269 lb-ft of torque. But three other powertrains are offered, including the 6.2-liter Hellcat V-8, which generates 702 hp and 650 lb-ft of torque. With RWD and a long bed, the V-8 powered variant can tow as much as 12,750 pounds.

The 2500 and 3500 are heavy-duty trucks and are better for increasingly large payloads. You can buy a gasoline-powered version with a 6.4-liter V-8 or a 6.7-liter turbo I-6. The latter produces 370 hp and 850 lb-ft of torque, which can haul up to 19,680 pounds compared to the V-8’s 17,350 pounds.

Finally, the Ram 3500 comes with a gas-fueled 6.4-liter V-8 or a diesel-fueled 6.7-liter Cummins turbocharged I-6. The I-6 comes in a standard version with 370 hp and 850 lb-ft and a high output version with 400 hp and 1000 lb-ft. The gas field version only hauls 15,990 pounds, but if you opt for the high output Cummins engine, you’ll be able to tow up to a whopping 35,100 pounds.

What does “Quad Cab” mean?

On top of your payload, you may need your Ram to haul people as frequently as cargo. Ideally, your vehicle will be optimal for passenger comfort as well as large payloads. Four-door pickups these days usually include a small seating area behind the front seats. On Ram trucks, these seats are accessible through forward-opening rear cabin doors, making it easier for passengers to enter and exit the cab. This cabin configuration is referred to as a Quad Cab.

If you’ve browsed over other truck models and come across the phrase “extended cab,” you may wonder how the Quad Cab differs from an extended cab. An extended cab includes rearward-opening cabin doors to access this area. According to MotorTrend, the Quad Cab style with its forward-facing doors is standard on Ram trucks and Toyota, Chevy, and GMC trucks.

If you’re looking for a new Quad Cab Ram truck, though, your options are a bit limited. You can only find this style on Ram 1500 and 1500 Classic pickup trucks. However, you can purchase a 1500, 2500, or 3500 with a Crew Cab if you need extra space.

What does “Crew Cab” mean?

The Crew Cab style takes the aft seating area and expands it so that the rear passengers have more headroom and legroom. The cabin of a Crew Cab resembles that of an SUV more than that of a traditional pickup truck. This option is ideal for those needing to transport individuals and cargo regularly. 

With a Crew Cab on a standard Ram truck, you’ll sacrifice some bed length. For example, the difference between a Ram 1500 Quad Cab and Crew Cab is about 9 inches. However, you can purchase a Crew Cab with an extended bed to regain the extra cargo room.

If even more passenger room is what you need, you can buy a Ram 2500 or 3500 model with an extended Crew Cab. The Mega Cab option provides you with 11 extra inches of space in the cabin, as per PickupTrucks. You also get 9.1 cubic feet of storage space in the cabin, though most of it comes from folding the rear seats down. Though you gain cabin space, you sacrifice bed length. The Mega Cab is available with a 6-foot bed only, unlike Crew Cab and Quad Cab models that can also be purchased with an 8-foot bed.

No matter which model and cab style you opt for, make sure it’s a good fit for your needs. High-level trims with upgraded powertrains can cost you upwards of $80,000, so make sure you understand exactly what you’re buying before signing on the dotted line.

RELATED: Handy Guide to the Ram 1500’s Body and Bed Configurations