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2010 Dodge Ram Crew Cab HEMI SLT Review & Test Drive

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2010 Dodge Ram Crew Cab HEMI SLT Big Horn 4×2 – ‘Driving Under the Radar’

It is too bad that Dodge doesn’t have the hundred of millions of dollars in TV, newspaper and magazine advertising budgeted for the Dodge Ram because it is one great pickup truck, as good or better than the competition from Ford, GM and Toyota.

Ever since it was redesigned and re-introduced in 1994, the Ram has been the innovator in the segment-first with a 3rd door, a 4th door, Hemi engine, unique storage options and a sedan like interior, just to name a few.

Dodge Ram continues to raise the bar with the most powerful and capable light-duty pickup truck in the segment with the 2010 Ram 1500.  For 2010 Ram 1500’s towing capability has increase to 10,450.  Combining Ram’s legendary 5.7 liter Hemi V8 engine and the segment-exclusive multi-link coil spring rear suspension, Gross Combined Weight Rating (GCWR) has increased to 15,500lbs., from 14,000lbs. with the 140.5in. wheelbase, 5.7 liter engine and 3.92 rear axle.  This increased GCWR equates to an increase in tow rating.  This improved rating, along with Ram’s industry-first features and impressive ride and handling capabilities, make Ram the most capable light-duty pickup on the market.

The 2010 Ram incorporates a first-in-segment, multi-link coil spring suspension that improves ride and handling without sacrificing payload, 1,900lbs., and towing capability of up to 14,450lbs.  New interior features include fuel-saver indicator on the 3.7 liter V6 models, a new premium Tire Pressure Monitoring system and Park-Assist indicator in the Electronic Vehicle Information Center display.  Other new features include iPod Control which connects devices to be controlled through Ram’s media center radio or steering wheel radio controls.  New exterior features include available folding trailer-tow mirrors, integrated trailer-brake controller, power trailer-tow mirrors, electro-chromic mirrors, an air dam that is 18mm longer for improved aerodynamics and new 22in. tires/wheels in R/T models.  Standard enhancements for 2010 include interactive Decel Fuel Shut Off (iDFSC) on all engines.  iDFSCO turns off the flow of fuel during vehicle deceleration for improved real-world fuel economy without any noticeable changes in engine performance.

Standard on the 2010 Ram two-wheel-drive regular cab and Quad Cab models is a 3.7 liter Magnum V6 engine generating 215hp and 235lb.ft. or torque.  Other available engines include the 5.7 liter Hemi V8 engine that produces 390hp and 407lb.ft. of torque, and the Flex-fuel 4.7 liter V8 that generates 310hp and 330lb.ft. of torque.

The 2010 Ram Crew Cab 1500 features an available first-in-segment RamBox cargo management system that provides weatherproof, lockable, illuminated and drainable storage compartments integrated into both cargo-box sides for effortless access and convenience.  The RamBox system includes a bed divider/2-ft. bed extender for oversize loads and a rail system with sliding, adjustable cleats for infinitely adjustable tie-down capability.  Ram also includes the first-in-segment, factory-installed dual exhaust with 4in. chromed stainless steel round tips styled dramatically into the rear bumper, and first-in-segment ‘store-in-the-floor storage bins in the second row.

Ram is available in a regular cab, quad cab and crew cab configuration and offers three box lengths: 8ft. regular cab, 6ft.4in. regular cab and quad cab, and 5ft.7in. crew cab.

Ram 1500 shoves the envelope in truck design with it’s distinguishable and bold ‘big-rig’ front fascia with an aluminum hood and large power bulge that imparts a ‘head-down, ready-to-charge’ attitude, while chromed front and rear bumpers wrap around body sides, the rear bumper on Hemi-equipped models is radiused over optional chromed dual exhausts, the glass-to-body ratio imparts a modern aesthetic; center pillars are smaller than previous Ram models and are finished in black to create an open appearance, the door sills are pulled down to cover the frame rails and the tailgate is designed with a built-in spoiler that smoothes air flow over the rear of the truck for enhanced aerodynamics and fuel economy.

The 3.7 liter V6 engine is mated to a smooth shifting 4-speed automatic transmission while the 4.7 liter and Hemi V8 engines are mated to a smooth shifting 5-speed automatic transmission.

The innovative, first-in-segment rear suspension setup features a solid axle located with multiple links and fitted with coil springs, stabilizer bar, twin-tube shocks and track bar for predictable performance and a smoother ride.  The rear suspension is enhanced with an independent front suspension featuring upper & lower ‘A’ arms, coil springs, twin-tube shocks and stabilizer bar.  The new Ram handles and rides like a large sedan with quick turn-in and smooth riding over bumpy roads.  The power-assisted rack & pinion steering system is boosted just right for all types of driving whether on-road or off, and has excellent ‘on-center’ feel.

Slowing the Ram down from speed are large, power-assisted steel disc brakes.  Up front are 13.2in. vented disc clamped with dual-piston calipers while the rear solid discs measures 13.8in. and is clamped with single-sliding calipers.  ABS and electronic stability control help you maintain control on slick roads and during severe maneuvering.

The Ram 1500 Crew Cab Hemi Bighorn 4X2 that I tested came equipped with 20X9in. wheels and 275/60R20in. tires that increased traction and kept the ride smooth inside.

Premium interior appointments include six-ring instrumentation, automatic temperature control, chrome and aluminum metallic accents, premium seating and two-tone upholstery, available floor shifter for automatic transmissions, a large padded center console with storage slots, four full-size doors, dual cupholders and giant two-tier storage bin.  The glove box has a storage area on top, a tilting steering wheel gives you the perfect angle to easy driving, and available power pedals fit your feet length correctly.

My nicely loaded Bighorn Hemi Crew Cab came with these other interior features: cruise control, remote keyless entry, a powerful AM-FM-CD/MP3 audio system with 6-speakers, variable intermittent wipers/washers, locking tailgate, power accessory delay, A/C, audio jack input for mobile devices, grab handles at the A-pillars and B-pillars, dual map lamps, 10-way power adjustable driver’s seat with power lumbar support, rear folding seat, rear air-ducts behind the center console and pull-down dual cupholders, rear under-seat compartment storage, power windows with front windows express up/down, leather wrapped steering wheel with audio control and Driver Information buttons, trip computer, rear power sliding window, rear cargo light, 115 and 12-volt power outlets, self-dimming rearview mirrors, power remote/heated/folding side mirrors, overhead console with universal garage door opener, halogen quad headlamps, foglamps, and dual sun visors with illumination.  Options include a power sunroof, Uconnect multimedia and Uconnect navigation with real time traffic information, hands-free communication and multiple ways to save and play back music and audio, a rear seat entertainment system, a 506-watt surround-sound audio system, and heated and ventilated leather front seats with a leather trimmed interior.

Standard safety features include front and side airbags, all-row side-curtain airbags, 5-3-point safety belts with front load limiters/pretensioners, optional ParkSense rear-park assist system assists at low speeds in reverse to detect stationary objects with a chime warning and available ParkView TV backup camera.

The interior’s standard and optional equipment makes the new Dodge Ram more like a full-size premium sedan than a pickup truck but you can use your new Ram anyway you want to because of its versatility and functionality.

My new Ram 1500 Crew Cab Hemi SLT has a base price of $31,020.00 and the Big Horn options mentioned above came to $36,815.00 including destination charges.

COPYRIGHT:2010:HARVEY SCHWARTZ

SPECIFICATIONS

Price: MSRP $31,020 As-Tested $36,815
Type: Large Truck
Where Built: United States
EPA Class: Standard Pickup Trucks

Dimensions

Exterior
Length: 229 in.
Width: 79.4 in.
Height: 75.1 in.
Wheel Base: 140.5 in.
Ground Clearance: 9 in.
Curb Weight: 5110 lbs.
Gross Weight: 6800 lbs.
Interior
Front Head Room: 41 in.
Front Hip Room: 63.2 in.
Front Shoulder Room: 66 in.
Rear Head Room: 39.9 in.
Rear Shoulder Room: 65.7 in.
Rear Hip Room: 63.2 in.
Front Leg Room: 41 in.
Rear Leg Room: 40.3 in.
Maximum Seating: 6

Performance Data

Base Number of Cylinders: 8
Base Engine Size: 4.7 liters
Base Engine Type: V8
Horsepower: 310 hp
Max Horsepower: 5650 rpm
Torque: 330 ft-lbs.
Max Torque: 3950 rpm
Maximum Payload: 1690 lbs.
Maximum Towing Capacity: 10200 lbs.
Drive Type: RWD
Turning Circle: 45.1 ft.

Fuel Data

Fuel Tank Capacity: 26 gal.
EPA Mileage Estimates: (City/Highway/Combined)
Automatic: 14 mpg / 19 mpg / 15 mpg
Range in Miles:
Automatic: 364 mi. / 494 mi. / 390 mi.

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