Automotive

2019 Ram 1500 pickup growls into Detroit for NAIAS 2018 debut

2019 Ram 1500 pickup growls in...
A huge amount of engineering lies underneath all that new bodywork on the 2019 Ram 1500
A huge amount of engineering lies underneath all that new bodywork on the 2019 Ram 1500
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New splayed bumper attachments for the 2019 Ram 1500 add more safety and coincide to the extensive use of high-strength steel for the framing
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New splayed bumper attachments for the 2019 Ram 1500 add more safety and coincide to the extensive use of high-strength steel for the framing
During the presentation of the 2019 Ram 1500, Mike Manley, Head of Ram Brand, shows the subtle body changes on the Ram 1500
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During the presentation of the 2019 Ram 1500, Mike Manley, Head of Ram Brand, shows the subtle body changes on the Ram 1500
The 2019 Ram 1500’s coefficient of drag is now .357, thanks in part to extensive wind tunnel testing
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The 2019 Ram 1500’s coefficient of drag is now .357, thanks in part to extensive wind tunnel testing
Durability testing was also a big part of the 2019 Ram 1500's development process
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Durability testing was also a big part of the 2019 Ram 1500's development process
Active air dampers, which debuted in the previous-generation Ram 1500, are now standard on all models
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Active air dampers, which debuted in the previous-generation Ram 1500, are now standard on all models
Standard infotainment in the 2019 Ram 1500 is based on an 8.4-inch touchscreen featuring the Uconnect system
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Standard infotainment in the 2019 Ram 1500 is based on an 8.4-inch touchscreen featuring the Uconnect system
On upgraded infotainment systems, the Ram 1500 now features a huge 12-inch display that can be split between two apps
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On upgraded infotainment systems, the Ram 1500 now features a huge 12-inch display that can be split between two apps
To all of this updated framework comes improved ride and handling, Ram says, thanks to a newly-designed air suspension system
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To all of this updated framework comes improved ride and handling, Ram says, thanks to a newly-designed air suspension system
A new off-road package is available for all Ram 1500 models that utilizes an electronic locking rear axle, tuned shocks, hill-descent control, and a full inch (25.4mm) of lift as standard
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A new off-road package is available for all Ram 1500 models that utilizes an electronic locking rear axle, tuned shocks, hill-descent control, and a full inch (25.4mm) of lift as standard
The 2019 Ram 1500 includes both standard and available advanced safety technologies including driver-assistance options like parking assistance
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The 2019 Ram 1500 includes both standard and available advanced safety technologies including driver-assistance options like parking assistance
The 2019 Ram 1500 will become available in the United States and Canada in the second quarter of 2018
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The 2019 Ram 1500 will become available in the United States and Canada in the second quarter of 2018
The 2019 Ram 1500 also has new powertrains that feature a mild hybrid system and cylinder deactivation to improve fuel efficiency
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The 2019 Ram 1500 also has new powertrains that feature a mild hybrid system and cylinder deactivation to improve fuel efficiency
An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard, upgraded to a new generation for the 2019 Ram to improve fuel efficiency
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An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard, upgraded to a new generation for the 2019 Ram to improve fuel efficiency
New offroad equipment for the 2019 Ram 1500 in its Rebel package aims to continue the truck's reputation for off-pavement prowess
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New offroad equipment for the 2019 Ram 1500 in its Rebel package aims to continue the truck's reputation for off-pavement prowess
The 2019 Ram Rebel 1500 continues with the model's extreme upgrades for the new generation of the truck and adds extreme off-road capability
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The 2019 Ram Rebel 1500 continues with the model's extreme upgrades for the new generation of the truck and adds extreme off-road capability
Prominent Ram logos and accentuated edges are part of the new 2019 Ram 1500's design
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Prominent Ram logos and accentuated edges are part of the new 2019 Ram 1500's design
The popular Ram Rebel model will continue with the 2019 model year Ram 1500 series
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The popular Ram Rebel model will continue with the 2019 model year Ram 1500 series
Another popular package for Ram trucks are the Laramie series, seen here in black
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Another popular package for Ram trucks are the Laramie series, seen here in black
The 2019 Ram 1500 Laramie shows the popular blackout packages often features on Dodge and Ram vehicles
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The 2019 Ram 1500 Laramie shows the popular blackout packages often features on Dodge and Ram vehicles
The blackout package on this 2019 Ram 1500 Laramie keeps the large Ram logo, but de-emphasizes it a bit
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The blackout package on this 2019 Ram 1500 Laramie keeps the large Ram logo, but de-emphasizes it a bit
The more refined trim edging for the 2019 Ram 1500 Limited shows its upscale character in comparison to its compadres
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The more refined trim edging for the 2019 Ram 1500 Limited shows its upscale character in comparison to its compadres
Interior roominess and seating comfort has long been important to the Ram truck series and continues for the 2019 model year
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Interior roominess and seating comfort has long been important to the Ram truck series and continues for the 2019 model year
Updates inside the 2019 Ram 1500 include this more advanced driver information computer for the instrument cluster
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Updates inside the 2019 Ram 1500 include this more advanced driver information computer for the instrument cluster
The popular Ram Box option for the Ram 1500 pickup will remain in the new-generation 2019 models
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The popular Ram Box option for the Ram 1500 pickup will remain in the new-generation 2019 models
The Ram logo is more prominent on the tailgate of the 2019 Ram 1500 models
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The Ram logo is more prominent on the tailgate of the 2019 Ram 1500 models
The profile of the new 2019 Ram 1500 is extended from the previous generation with a longer cab and wheelbase
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The profile of the new 2019 Ram 1500 is extended from the previous generation with a longer cab and wheelbase
One popular package for the Ram 1500 is the Limited, shown here
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One popular package for the Ram 1500 is the Limited, shown here
The white and black trim for the 2019 Ram 1500 Rebel model may prove popular for the truck
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The white and black trim for the 2019 Ram 1500 Rebel model may prove popular for the truck
The 2019 Ram 1500 is prominently showcased at the Ram Truck booth at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit
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The 2019 Ram 1500 is prominently showcased at the Ram Truck booth at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit
The new frame is made of 98 percent high-strength steel, making it stronger than ever, improving payload capability to 2,300 pounds (1,043.2 kg) and towing to up to 12,750 lbs (5,783.3 kg) 
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The new frame is made of 98 percent high-strength steel, making it stronger than ever, improving payload capability to 2,300 pounds (1,043.2 kg) and towing to up to 12,750 lbs (5,783.3 kg) 
A huge amount of engineering lies underneath all that new bodywork on the 2019 Ram 1500
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A huge amount of engineering lies underneath all that new bodywork on the 2019 Ram 1500

Not to be outdone by other truck makers, most of whom have unveiled new pickup trucks over the past year, Ram rumbled into Detroit with a new 1500 half-ton pickup. The unexpected debut from Ram definitely turns heads and makes a statement up on its car show pedestal.

The 2019 Ram 1500 has a look that's only marginally different from the previous-generation, with the signature Ram grille and more pronounced Ram's head logos. What's changed, though, are the differences between individual models in the Ram 1500's lineup, with each getting more or less stuff – mostly in terms of lighting, striping, and logo markings.

The new Ram 1500 is longer and wider than the previous-gen. Cab length increases by about four inches (101.6mm), wheelbase by up to four inches (depending on cab configuration), bed height increases by about 1.5 inches (38.1mm), and overall vehicle width increases by half an inch (12.7mm). Other body changes are subtle and aimed towards improved aerodynamics. The Ram 1500's coefficient of drag is now .357, with the truck utilizing active grille shutters and air suspension.

Underneath all that new bodywork is a huge amount of engineering. Despite growing in size, the pickup actually loses weight while gaining a much heavier-duty frame. The new frame is made of 98 percent high-strength steel, making it stronger than ever, improving payload capability to 2,300 pounds (1,043.2 kg) and towing to up to 12,750 lbs (5,783.3 kg). These gains don't mean more weight though, with the Ram 1500 weighing about 225 pounds (102 kg) less than its outgoing generation. Some 100 pounds (45.3 kg) of that weight loss came from the frame itself.

To all of this updated framework comes improved ride and handling, Ram says, thanks to a newly-designed air suspension system, frequency response dampening shocks, and re-tuned chassis components. A new off-road package utilizes an electronic locking rear axle, tuned shocks, hill-descent control, and a full inch (25.4mm) of lift as standard. There's also a heat exchanger system for the rear axle to warm its gear oil to improve its efficiency.

The standard 3.6-liter V6 remains the base engine, but now includes engine stop-start and short-term torque assist powered by brake energy regeneration. These same features are found on the 5.7-liter Hemi V8 engine. This mild hybrid system adds up to 90 foot-pounds (122 Nm) of torque to the V6's output and up to 130 lb-ft (176 Nm) of torque to the V8. The V8 engine also features cylinder cut-off when cruising for better fuel economy as well as active noise cancellation in the cabin. A new generation eight-speed automatic transmission is standard.

Inside, the 2019 Ram 1500 is a bit larger, but most of the focus is on new technology. The fourth-generation of Fiat-Chrysler's Uconnect infotainment system is featured prominently, sitting on an huge 12-inch touchscreen display that dominates the central dash.

On upgraded infotainment systems, the Ram 1500 now features a huge 12-inch display that can be split between two apps
On upgraded infotainment systems, the Ram 1500 now features a huge 12-inch display that can be split between two apps

The 12-inch screen can be split for dual application use, and 4G WiFi through SiriusXM's Guardian Connected Services, plus a 19-speaker Harman Kardon audio system with a 900-watt surround-sound amplifier is available. Navigation can include voice-controlled destination and 3D maps, with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay available on both the standard 8.4-inch Uconnect and the upgraded 12-inch screen.

Driver-assistance options include parking assistance, lane departure warning and mitigation, as well as trailer sway damping control.

The 2019 Ram 1500 will become available in the United States and Canada in the second quarter of 2018 and has entered production at FCA's Sterling Heights Assembly Plant in Michigan.

Source: FCA

2 comments
Bruce H. Anderson
It is a nice looking truck. I drove a Ram 1500 recently as a rental. The main problem I have with it, and with the other major players, is that it is HUGE. I say this in comparison to my 93 Suburban, which is quite the barge. And since payload weight and size has not changed much in the recent past, I can only assume that there are some "size matters" motives on the design side that account for the increased girth (and a higher Cd as well I bet).
Aaron Turpen
@Bruce: Actually, payload and towing are a bit higher in this new Ram 1500 and the coefficient of drag is far lower than it was in the previous generations of the pickup. About on par with any midsize crossover, in fact. Points on the new Ram design that are of interest from a market POV: towing and, it appears, frame strength, are now commensurate with the Nissan Titan XD and interior space is on par or better than that of the Ford F-150. Ram makes a point of being "best in class" for everything possible, so their aim to get BiC on towing, hauling, fuel economy, etc. is basically SOP. The fact that the new 1500 is poised to gain/keep those titles when the 2019 models from rivals are released is not surprising at all.