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2019 Ram 1500 V8 Crew Cab Big Horn Sport 4×4 Review & Test Drive

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Filed under Automotive, Ram, Test Drives

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Continuing a distinct notion that trucks are an essential part of the American lifestyle, Ram redesigns its 1500 pickup truck for the 2019 model year. In the redesign, Ram gets soft but only in the right areas without compromising its expected truck duties.

>> Get the best price on the RAM 1500 from a network of local dealers now. <<

The 2019 Ram 1500 appeases to those who look to get it all in a truck, which means they can drive it to work every day, take it to nights on the town, pile the family in a plush cabin for vacation travels, and perform the duties expected of a rugged and capable truck. The multipurpose theme appears to be one that automakers are attempting capitalize on in recent designs. Ram, in knowing what the modern-day American public seeks, gives us everything without much of a compromise wrapped up in a good-looking truck that may pass the test to park in the lot among other car show vehicles at your local Cars & Coffee show.

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Getting my hands on the 2019 Ram 1500 Big Horn equipped with the brand’s loved 5.7-liter HEMI V8 engine was an enjoyable experience. The 395 horsepower and 410 lb-ft of torque that gets sent through an 8-speed automatic transmission is the right engine to keep up with the paces of its competition. The respectable fuel mileage that I observed averaging about 18.8 mpg wasn’t all that bad considering historic figures of V8-powered trucks. Initial EPA estimates for the V8 Ram 1500 4×4 Crew Cab is 15 mpg city, 22 mpg highway, and 17 mpg combined.

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Overall, the Ram 1500 is a decent performer. You can expect to reach 60 mph in about 6.5 seconds and have assured handling and braking attributes. In all, the performance of the new 2019 Ram 1500 was mostly expected but with a smoothness and quietness that I’ve never experienced in the full-sized V8-powered truck segment. The ride quality was among the best in any truck I have driven and that’s using Ram’s standard 5-link setup with its solid rear axle. While an air suspension system can be equipped on the new 1500 for most trim levels, it is not needed provided that you have the optional side steps installed, which my test vehicle lacked. Such an omission is nearly a deal breaker for me and my passengers. All of us had difficulties climbing into the Ram 1500 with its 8.7-inches of ground clearance. Word to the wise: never, ever, forget the side steps on the new Ram 1500, doing so makes for an unpleasant experience that is only overshadowed by me knowing that there is such an option!

The smooth ride quality of the Ram 1500 Big Horn completely transforms the truck and makes it livable on commutes and long hauls. Adding to the plushness of the new Ram 1500 is the cabin that is nicely appointed with standard features in the basic Big Horn trim and reaches a delightful level of luxury when going up the trim line. While each trim level adds to the pricing, in many ways, the added features and amenities become worth the price of admission by the way of its uniqueness, such as having a rotary dial for the gear selector or a customizable Uconnect infotainment system, which remains to be one of my favorite in the automotive business.

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What’s best of all in the 2019 Ram 1500 is it never departs from its main duty of being a rugged truck despite its plushness. The ability to tow up to 11,340 pounds when properly equipped (or haul 1,770 pounds) remains intact, and there is a plethora of trims and configurations that can be had with two primary gas engine choices. Having the Big Horn Crew Cab 4×4 HEMI test vehicle, the Ram 1500 is somewhat limited with many of the features that are desired by people who want a multi-purpose truck. Though, my test vehicle had just enough equipment to get a grasp on things getting even better with a top-trimmed model that features the large 12-inch infotainment touchscreen in place of the traditional 8.4-inch screen. The Tesla-like infotainment screen will only add another level of attractiveness to the truck market, which includes a high level of customization and sought-after features like Apple CarPlay and Android auto (also included on my test vehicle embedded into the latest 8.4-inch Uconnect infotainment system).

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Many of the interior’s well-thought-out compartments and storage areas add to the appeal of the new Ram 1500. There is a new level of convenience found with clever phone holders and a sliding cup holder rack that all conform to what you expect in a full-size truck. Not to mention, the vast size of the interior allowing five adults of virtually any size to stretch out with plenty of space to spare.

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On the outside of the new 2019 Ram 1500 is a clearly updated look that uses bright LED headlights and fog lights, a full array of LED tail lights, an updated and modernized grille, new wheel styles that can be wrapped in beefy all-terrain tires with white sidewall lettering, and an easy-close dampened tailgate that opens with a light press of an electric button. Some of the design aesthetics could take a while for some to become accustomed too, such as the model series emblems on the edges of the hood. Otherwise, I believe Ram has done justice to the design to retain a somewhat menacing look but one that can easily fit the mold of contemporary buyers.

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The pricing for full-sized trucks has increased ever-so-slightly over the past few years as Americans clamor towards SUV’s, crossovers, and trucks alike. The 2019 Ram may have some added value in its unique interior design and surprisingly-smooth ride quality over others. As such, the pricing starts at $34,495 for a Ram 1500 V6 Crew Cab 4×2 Tradesman. Moving one step higher with a few welcomed options, such as the 4×4 system, which includes an automatic 4×4 high selection that doesn’t lock any differentials, the new Ram 1500 Big Horn Crew Cab 4×4 Sport hits an as-tested price of just over $50,000.

>> Get the best price on the RAM 1500 from a network of local dealers now. <<

SPECIFICATIONS

  • Price: Base Ram 1500 V6 Crew Cab 4×2 Tradesman $34,495 / As-Tested Ram 1500 Crew Cab Big Horn 4×4 Sport $50,000 – estimated
  • >> Get the best price on the RAM 1500 from a network of local dealers now. <<
  • Engine: 5.7-liter DOHC HEMI V8  395 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm / 410 ft-lbs. of torque @ 3,950 rpm
  • Transmission: 8-speed automatic with steering-wheel-mounted shift-limitation
  • Wheelbase: 140.5 in.
  • Total length: 228.9 in.
  • Total width: 82.1 in.
  • Fuel tank: 23 gallons
  • Headroom: f/r-41.0/39.9 in.
  • Shoulder room: f/r-66.0/65.7 in.
  • Legroom: f/r-40.9/39.8 in.
  • Curb weight: 4,800 – 5,400 lbs.
  • 0-60 mph: 6.5 seconds
  • EPA mileage: 15 mpg city/ 22 mpg highway / 17 mpg combined
  • Max Towing: 11,340 pounds (properly configured)

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