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HEAVY DUTY AND CHASSIS CAB
The 2019 Ram Heavy Duty is a Truck of Rugged Proportion.
At its unveiling at the 2019 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), the new Ram Heavy Duty truck made a Motor City-sized splash. Defying reality as we know it, with a towing capacity of 35,100 pounds and payload of 7,680 pounds, these big rigs stopped the show dead in its tracks. The Ram HD is the first heavy-duty truck to destroy the 1,000 ft.-lb. of torque threshold.
“We are looking to raise the bar across the board,” Ram chief Reid Bigland said. “It starts by taking the performance barrier and shattering it. This is the most powerful heavy-duty truck. Ever. We are announcing power that some thought was not even possible a few years ago.”
Amazingly enough, the capability story doesn’t end there. Doubling down at the 2019 Chicago Auto Show (CAS), Mopar® presented a modified 2019 Ram 2500 Heavy Duty to emphasize a few of the more-than staggering 170 innovative products Mopar will offer for the most capable pickup in the segment.1
“The Mopar-modified Ram 2500 Heavy Duty on display at CAS is the latest example of our commitment to offering owners a full product line to choose from right at launch of FCA US LLC vehicles,” said Steve Beahm, Head of Parts and Service (Mopar) and Passenger Car Brands, FCA – North America. “Whether it’s for the trail, the street or the worksite, Mopar will have more than 170 parts and accessories that provide a path to enhanced capability for the new 2019 Ram Heavy Duty.”
The lineup of those parts and accessories includes a brand-new bed extender, bed liners, tool boxes, a cargo ramp and a side step, just to name a few.
The modified 2019 Ram 2500 Heavy Duty Big Horn was showcased in a dramatic monochromatic Blue Streak production color. Also, it had been decked out with some vehicle-launch-ready Mopar® innovations, as well as some one-of-a-kind concept products. For example, inside the cab, there was an auxiliary switch bank, which not only integrated with the five 5-inch LED lights perched on the black, powder-coated Ram Bar in the bed, but also provides a central area for operation of all auxiliary accessories. Conceptual off-road rails were powder-coated to provide protection for trail driving. Mopar worked in close conjunction with the Ram Brand, engineering and the Product Design Office, with the strictest standards and factory-exclusive data, to bring Ram enthusiasts these (and more) capability enhancements that outperform and out-think the competition.
So, while 1,000 lb.-ft. of torque is beyond impressive, there’s more to this heavy-duty story than just raw grunt. For instance, while beefing up the optional 6.7-liter Cummins diesel I6, Ram engineers actually managed to make the engine weigh 60 pounds less. Additional upgrades include a new cast-iron cylinder head, lighter pistons, new connecting rods and bearings, plus, an all-new exhaust manifold and tweaked variable-geometry turbocharger. The big-boy Cummins mates to an upgraded six-speed Aisin automatic that is built specifically to handle all that torque. Changes to the transmission’s shift quality include new variable-force solenoid controls for the torque-converter clutch. A new reverse accumulator improves the shift feel when going from park to reverse. (There are other engine options for the 2019 Ram Heavy Duty, as well. Another Cummins variant marries up to a six-speed automatic transmission putting out 370 horsepower and 850 lb.-ft. of torque.
And the standard 6.4-liter gas V8 hooks up to an eight-speed automatic transmission while putting out 410 horsepower and 429 lb.-ft. of torque.)
For even more weight savings, not to mention improved strength, the Ram HD’s frame is built with 98.5-percent high-strength steel, with six cross-members and fully boxed rear sections, which make it ready for both fifth-wheel and goose-neck hitches. The body employs high-strength steel, combined with other weight-saving measures, contributing to an overall 143 lb. curb weight reduction. And that same sleek body leaves the wind tunnel with a best-in-the-segment2 drag coefficient of 0.409. As a result, Ram predicts 6-percent better city and 8-10 percent highway fuel economy than the 2018 model years for the 2500s and better all-around fuel economy for the 3500s.
Look for new, stronger and lighter front and rear axles that minimize noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) and handle the industry-leading payload and towing capabilities. There’s enhanced ride quality with new suspension tuning that includes Frequency Response Damping shocks, progressive springs and upgraded bushings, as well. Plus, there’s a rear air suspension, which features a driver-activated Bed Lowering Mode (which makes for easier bed loading and unloading), Normal/Payload Mode and Trailer-Tow Mode. There’s even braking system upgrades resulting in shortened stopping distances and increases in capability and improved brake feel. Braking on the diesel models is also aided by an integrated exhaust brake.
And speaking of better stops, there are some ground-breaking safety and security offerings on the Ram Heavy Duty. The upgraded trailer brake controller is now linked to the automatic emergency braking system so that a computer can activate both the truck and trailer brakes simultaneously. Before you press the brake, both the forward collision warning or adaptive cruise control come to your rescue. The Mopar Trailer Camera3 integrates into the center console 12-inch screen for viewing the rear area behind the trailer. The wired camera mounts on the trailer for a 10-second view of the rear scene and is fully submersible for boat launches. It includes a max 40-foot modular adaptable-to-length cable and docking station for storage. The camera requires a Uconnect® system with 8.4- or 12-inch screen and the factory- or dealer-installed Auxiliary Camera Pre Package. And while we’re on the subject of trailers, the truck can also monitor up to six tire pressures on the truck and an additional 12 tires for the trailer. Also available for increased safety are a blind-spot monitoring system, special parking sensors for the (extra wide) 3500 dually models and three LED headlight options.
For 2019, all-new features, technology and premium materials help the redesigned Ram Heavy Duty continue its interior leadership with quality, technology and luxury. Each trim level is uniquely characterized to reflect individual identity.
You’ll find the Ram Brand’s luxury showcased in the Limited, which has a corrugated mesh grille and heaps of outside chrome. Inside, you’ll experience a 100-percent full-grain hand wrapped leather dashboard, door panel coverings and arm rests. Plus, with up to 258 liters of interior storage volume, the Mega Cab offers more than 120 percent additional storage capacity in comparison to its closest competitor.
Ram HD’s well-appointed interior includes a redesigned center console sporting 12 storage configurations large enough to stow a 15.0-inch laptop out of sight. It has a bank of auxiliary switches, a wireless phone charger, and up to five USB chargers that communicate with the Uconnect® system. The optional 12-inch touchscreen, previously only found in the light-duty trucks, will now be available on all heavy-duty trucks. It provides maximum leverage for utility, clustering more of the controls in one place. “All of the controls that are customary to somebody hauling a large trailer will be right there at the driver’s fingertips,” Bigland says.
Also, like the 1500, every Ram HD gets an all-new interior, and every trim gets two to four color scheme options. Active noise cancellation, anti-vibration devices and acoustic glass make for a quieter cabin, resulting in an interior noise reduction of 10 decibels – the quietest Ram Heavy Duty ever. The new HVAC system cranks out 30 percent more air at lower noise levels and includes bigger front defroster vents for melting in freezing temperatures. All-new in-duct electric heating elements on diesel models help warm up the cabin on cold days, and larger system control and new larger panel ducts perform better with work-gloved hands. When talking interior amenities, it looks like Ram has thought of everything.
With Ram product leadership and Mopar® Parts and Accessories, Ram Heavy Duty delivers on what serious truck drivers have been telling makers they want in truckloads: more power, more technology and more comfort. Inside and out, under the hood and out back, the new Ram Heavy Duty surrounds owners in luxury and technology that, until now, was unavailable in a heavy-duty pickup. Times seem to have changed and Ram Heavy Duty is ready to comfortably carry, haul or tow whatever the future might bring.
(1) Capability based on Best-In-Class Towing, Torque, and Payload. Class based on 250/2500 and 350/3500 pickups. (2) Class based on 250/2500 pickups. (3) Always look before proceeding. An electronic drive aid is not a substitute for conscientious driving. Always be aware of your surroundings.
Properly secure all cargo. Always tow within the vehicle’s capacity.