Best Truck in 2018 – the Ram 1500

2018 Ram 1500 Limited

Considering the various options currently available in the pickup segment, buyers often get confused with their priorities. Nevertheless, the Ram 1500 continues to be a popular choice among buyers despite existing for decades now. This is particularly due to its blend of excellent lightweight body, potent performance, excellent suspensions, and a wide range of cab options.

For the 2018 model year, Ram 1500 has a top-level Tungsten edition and a mid-range Harvest edition. In addition, a rearview camera is standard across all models and trims while there is a new 8.4-inch infotainment system that lights up the cabin. The V6 engine can be paired across three cab and bed styles while the diesel engine options have also been widened.

Design

A complete design overhaul was last given to the Ram 1500 way back in 2009. Despite being a decade old, the exterior styling continues to age well and still looks fresh enough. The Tungsten edition of the current model year is defined by chrome grille with huge 'Ram' embedded in the front. At one look from the front, the 1500 has an imposing personality. Then there is the sporty hood, blacked out headlamps and satin painted wheels. As for the Harvest edition, it is available in Case IH Red and New Holland Blue colors. This trim is particularly targeted at farmers and while it retains the chrome grille mesh, it does have all-terrain tires. The base height of the pickup is increased by an inch to facilitate more off-road riding.

Ram also offers several packages to customize the truck as per one's needs. The Trailer Tow Mirror and Brake Control Group package come with long-range mirrors that are excellent for towing other vehicles. The Ram Box bins in the rear fenders provide extra protected storage space.

Another excellent feature is the coil spring rear suspension and self-leveling air suspension, which is exclusive in the segment. Just holding a button on the key fob lowers the truck to ease entry or exit for older passengers or kids.

Interiors

Ram's first in class air suspensions offer an excellent and smooth ride quality irrespective of the truck being laden or unladen. Even the standard rear coil springs beat the competition of rival trucks. This combined with a quiet cabin makes for a plush and pleasant ride on all terrains.

The Ram 1500 has outstanding ergonomics and the front cabin is airy and not monotonous. In the case of a crew cab, the rear seat space is excellent even for tall passengers on a long tour. Getting in and out of the cab is easy, especially if you have the optional air suspension. Irrespective, the handles on the front roof pillar make accessing seats all the more simple.

What's more, Ram has made leather interiors available even with the Rebel trim. A fine blend of plush seat covers along with a dash of wooden accent across the cabin offers a plush feel.

The 8.4-inch Uconnect infotainment system is available across all trims. It is currently one of the best in the market and is extremely easy to use yet offers a ton of features like 4G LTE mobile hotspot, HD radio, and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto at the same time.

Engine & Performance

What sets the Ram 1500 stand apart from its rivals is the class-exclusive diesel engine, which is not offered in any full-size pickup. The three engine options available for the current year model of the Ram 1500 include the base 3.6L V6 generating 305 hp and 269 pounds per foot of torque; 5.7L V8 pumping 395 hp and 410 pounds per foot of torque; and the top end 3L V6 turbo-diesel which makes 240 hp and 420 pounds per foot of torque. All the engines are paired with an eight-speed transmission and are available in either rear-wheel drive or four-wheel drive.

The engine options are as good as it gets for full-size pickups. The gears shift smoothly in the eight-speed automatic and the diesel has enough power to make this a mean machine. The steering is direct and has a linear feel. Even with a fully loaded truck, it continues to be crisp and provides good feedback. This, in turn, makes the body roll rein in pretty well. On sharp corners, the Ram 1500 holds onto itself even while towing. This can be attributed to the suspension qualities of the pickup.

Being the only truck with a diesel in the segment, it naturally also makes the Ram 1500 offer best in class fuel efficiency! The diesel engine offers 21 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on highways, making it lead the pack by a mile. Meanwhile, the V8 offers 13 mpg on city roads and 18 mpg on expressways.

Utility

The Ram 1500's Hemi V8 offers the most towing capability at a maximum of 10,700 pounds, followed by the EcoDiesel at 9,200 pounds, and the V6 being the smallest at 7,600 pounds, depending on the configuration. These may not be the best in class, but they are still considerably higher than the average. In addition, there are plenty of storage pockets inside the cabin that make the Ram 1500 a combination of luxury and practicality.

Conclusion

Buying pickups is a tricky business. Some go for style, while some opt for features. Being the older brother among the group, the Ram 1500 continues to stand tall in the family. This is mainly due to its contemporary design, which was considered futuristic when last redesigned, modern and plush interiors, latest technology, and plenty of options to customize. In addition, the availability of a diesel engine and air suspensions provide an edge to the 1500.

For a test drive of the Ram 1500, come to Landmark South Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram. We're sure you'll be impressed at the many features available and the excellent road handling of the 2018 Ram 1500.


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