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  • William Maley
    William Maley

    Review: 2018 Ram ProMaster 2500 Cargo 159" Wheelbase - High Roof

      Sadly Not Living Down By the River

    (Author's Note: As was pointed out to me on Facebook, the diesel engine is nowhere to be seen on the consumer site or the configurator. Yet, it appears in FCA's media materials. In an email sent this afternoon, Ram Trucks spokesman Nick Cappa said the option has been dropped for 2018. This review has been updated with this new information. -WM)

    I’ll admit that I was a bit crazy requesting a 2018 Ram ProMaster van for review. Ever since it was introduced, I have been interested in this rebadged version of the Fiat Ducato van sold elsewhere. Unlike most vans that use a rear-wheel drive layout, the ProMaster uses a front-wheel drive one. I wanted to know if this works for a vehicle designed for work. But I also have an odd curiosity to cargo vans in general as I wondered what it would be like to drive one for a week as my daily driver. This is what I found out.

    Function over form best describes the design brief for the Ram ProMaster. The overall profile reminds us of an oversized dustbuster with a steeply raked and short front end and tall sides. Awkward is the kindest word to use on the ProMaster’s front end with the grille placed very low, acres of gray plastic, headlights positioned near the windshield, and a large glass area. The rest of the ProMaster’s design fits in line with other cargo vans with clean sides, split-opening rear doors, and a set of optional wheels. 

    The ProMaster offers a wide variety of configurations. With three weight classes, three body styles, and various roof height and length options, you’ll be able to find a van that fit your needs. Our particular tester is one of the popular configurations; a 2500 with the 159-inch wheelbase and high roof option.

    Getting inside the ProMaster isn’t tough thanks to wide opening front doors and steps to help you climb up. Once in, you’ll notice one of the key benefits to the ProMaster’s exterior. The large glass area not only makes the interior feel airy, it provides excellent outward visibility. This helps make maneuvering in tight spaces easier.

    The design is very utilitarian with a plain look and controls within easy reach of the driver and passenger. There are some clever touches such as the integrated clipboard latch on the top of the dash to hold paperwork and numerous storage spaces. Many surfaces are covered in hard plastics which will hold up to the various work demands being put upon by owners.

    One area that will be a major issue for drivers is the seating position. Instead of you sitting in front of the steering wheel, Ram has the wheel set up similar to a school bus or semi-truck where you sit over it. Not helping is the placement of the pedals where you step down instead of push forward. The end result is a driver being in a hunched over position. This could be somewhat alleviated if there was a tilt adjustment for the steering wheel. But Ram only offers a telescoping adjustment. The only way to get a sudo-tilt adjustment is to adjust the angle of the seat.

    The seats themselves are perfect for a long workday with excellent support and firm cushioning. It needs to be noted that the ProMaster only offers the bare minimum when it comes to seat adjustments such as angle and position. If you want lumbar adjustments, you need to tick that box on the option list.

    All ProMasters come with a 5.3-inch touchscreen with FCA’s UConnect infotainment system. Our test van came with the optional TomTom navigation system. The small screen makes it slightly difficult to look at quickly or use while on the move. We would skip the TomTom navigation system as the graphics are quite dated and it takes some time to process before providing directions. At least the base UConnect system has many of the qualities we like on the larger systems such as a simple user interface and snappy performance.

    Step behind the cockpit to enter the massive cargo space. Our particular ProMaster configuration boasted 420 cubic feet of space and max payload of 4,020 pounds. One of the reasons I had requested the van was to get a number of items at my parent’s house to be donated. The van was up to the task by swallowing up everything including a dining room set. The low step-in height, rear-doors that open up 260-degrees, and numerous tie-down points to keep cargo in its place were appreciated.

    There are two engines on offer for the ProMaster. We had the base 3.6L V6 producing 280 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with a six-speed automatic. There is an optional a 3.0L turbodiesel inline-four with a six-speed automated manual. (No more diesel for 2018 according to FCA). The V6 engine moves the van with no issue even with a large amount of cargo. As for the automatic, it delivers smooth shifts. However, the transmission showed some slowness to change gears. We’re assuming this is due to van only having 350 miles when we took delivery. For those who need a specific setup in the cargo area such as plumbers or painters, Ram offers various uplift packages that include such items as shelving, integrated tool boxes, and dividers.

    The low mileage might also explain the fuel economy figure of 15.7 mpg in mostly city driving. No EPA numbers are available due to the van’s gross vehicle weight being above 8,500 pounds.

    It is evident that Ram’s prime consideration for the suspension was tuned to deal with heavy loads and not comfort. With the van empty, the ride quality is quite harsh with many bumps making their way inside. Fill up the van and the ride begins to smooth out somewhat. Steering takes a lot of effort as it's very slow and requires a driver to make a number of rotations to do simple turns. There is a fair amount of road and wind noise coming inside the passenger compartment.

    If I was to judge the ProMaster like I would with a normal passenger car or SUV, it would be towards the bottom. There is a long list of problems such as the odd driving position, the number of comfort features that are optional, slow steering, and harsh ride. But I need to look at the ProMaster in a different light since it isn’t built for people like me. It is built for people who need a vehicle that can handle holding a lot of cargo or tools, along with being on some sort of worksite for periods at a time. Then the ProMaster begins to show some bright spots. The massive cargo area with the low step-in and tie-down point make it great for deliveries or moving. Using a front-wheel drive setup doesn’t hurt the ProMaster’s capability in terms of payload, and will help the van when the weather becomes terrible like a snowstorm. Finally, the V6 engine is plenty powerful for any situation the ProMaster is in.

    While I found the ProMaster to be a bit much to be used a daily driver for me, I can very much see the appeal for those in the commercial market. Just be sure to try the seating position as that will be the item that will influence your decision the most.

    Disclaimer: Ram Trucks Provided the ProMaster 2500, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas

    Year: 2018
    Make: Ram Trucks
    Model: ProMaster Cargo
    Trim: 2500 159" Wheelbase - High Roof
    Engine: 3.6L DOHC 24-Valve V6
    Driveline: Six-Speed Automatic, Front-wheel Drive
    Horsepower @ RPM: 280 @ 6,400
    Torque @ RPM: 260 @ 4,400
    Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - N/A
    Curb Weight: 4.483 lbs
    Location of Manufacture: N/A
    Base Price: $35,095
    As Tested Price: $43,460 (Includes $1,395 Destination Charge)

    Options:
    Sliding Driver-Side Door without Glass - $595.00
    Trailer Tow Group - $585.00
    UConnect 3 Navigation with 5-inch Display - $495.00
    16-inch x 6.0-inch Aluminum Wheels - $445.00
    Wood Composite Floor - $445.00
    Premium Appearance Group - $395.00
    Interior Convenience Group - $345.00
    ParkSense Rear Park-Assist System - $295.00
    Rear Hinged Doors with Deep Tinted Glass - $295.00
    Speed Control - $295.00
    Upper and Lower Side Wall Paneling Group - $295.00
    LED Cargo Areas Light Bars - $285.00
    225/75R16C BSW All-Season Tires - $250.00
    Driver/Passenger 6-Way Adjustable Lumbar Seats - $245.00
    Power Folding/Heated Mirrors - $245.00
    Security Alarm - $245.00
    DOT Certified Roadside Safety Kit - $195.00
    Heated Driver Seat - $195.00
    Leather-Wrapped Steering Wheel - $195.00
    SiriusXM Sat Radio w/1-Year Subscription - $195.00
    Rear Assist Handles - $150.00
    Heated Passenger Seat - $145.00
    Instrument Panel Bright Bezels - $95.00
    12-Volt Rear Auxiliary Power Outlet - $45.00

    Edited by William Maley

    User Feedback

    Recommended Comments

    Being fwd has its advantages. That low load floor height makes these so much easier to get things in and out, plus also gives you about as much internal vertical height you can get without going to a box truck.

    The nose cone, while....homely.... Is actually designed to be easily and cheaply replaceable such that a person with minimal mechanical skill could perform it themselves if they wished.

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      Press Release is on Page 2


      All-new 2021 Ram 1500 TRX: Quickest, Fastest and Most Powerful Mass-produced Truck in the World With 702-horsepower 6.2-liter Supercharged HEMI® V-8 Engine
      2021 Ram 1500 TRX Engineered to Handle the Most Punishing Conditions With Extreme Capability and to Outperform Every Other Truck  2021 Ram 1500 TRX, the apex predator of the truck world, is engineered to handle the most punishing conditions with extreme capability and durability, significantly outperforming every other truck New frame extensively uses high-strength steel that increases low-torsion attributes to amplify durability and stability Engineered to deliver a new level of truck performance, the 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI® V-8 engine sets new benchmarks for power and performance among half-ton pickups: Rated at 702 horsepower, 650 lb.-ft. of torque 0-60 miles per hour (mph) in 4.5 seconds; 0-100 mph in 10.5 seconds Quarter mile in 12.9 seconds at 108 mph Top speed of 118 mph High-torque-capacity TorqueFlite 8HP95 eight-speed automatic transmission delivers quick, crisp gear changes during both normal and performance driving conditions New, innovative dual-path air induction system delivers maximum output and feeds a steady supply of cool, clean air to the engine through the front grille and functional hood scoop Largest air filter in the segment uses dual filter elements and is designed for extreme, dusty environments with four times the dust trapping capacity when compared to the closest competitor Full-time active transfer case features upgraded internals for improved strength, durability All-new, unique suspension system with active damping, inspired by desert off-road racers, incorporates forged aluminum front upper and lower control arms with special attention to caster and camber angles during suspension cycling New independent front suspension system with active damping uses high-strength aluminum to maintain overall strength and durability TRX uses a Dana 60 solid rear axle with a 3.55 ratio featuring full-floating hubs and axle-hop damper for improved traction and axle control on rough surfaces. An electronic locking rear differential is standard for increased performance off-road Designed exclusively for TRX, new front and rear 2.5-inch Bilstein Black Hawk e2 adaptive performance shocks provide fast reaction time, unbeatable damping and improved heat dissipation for traversing harsh terrain at speeds greater than 100 mph Five-link coil suspension is tuned to deliver the best combination of ride, handling and comfort no matter the road surface Wheel travel is greater than 13 inches at all four corners, an increase of more than 40 percent compared to the rest of the Ram 1500 lineup All-new face of Ram includes modern Ram’s head logo and “R-A-M” badge with flow-through lettering Functional hood scoop is responsible for 50 percent of air entering the 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI V-8 engine while the other 50 percent enters through the grille New integrated composite fender flares add 8 inches of body width and feature all-new steel box outers, creating a striking “hourglass” body New LED clearance lamps are cleverly integrated into the hood scoop and front bumper flares, amplifying the new aesthetic of the truck Full LED Adaptive Front-lighting System (AFS) includes twin bi-functional projector headlamps, fog lamps and taillamps with up to 15 degrees of direction control with steering input Most spacious interior in the segment offers new, authentic premium materials, colors and textures, including hand-wrapped leather instrument panels for unexpected luxury throughout All-new 2021 Ram TRX features three interior options, including premium cloth and vinyl, premium wrapped leather and suede, or premium wrapped leather and suede with available red and carbon fiber accents New flat-bottom steering wheel offers enhanced hand grips wrapped in leather with optional suede and carbon fiber accents. New aluminum paddle shifters stretch above and below the steering wheel spokes Reimagined center console with maximum storage includes a new performance-oriented floor shifter, wireless charging dock and five USBs, including Type A and C ports Custom specifications plate on the console lid lists which engine is under the hood, the type of supercharger Ram TRX uses, boost output, horsepower and the vehicle-specific Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) Ram TRX-specific transfer case switches are integrated into the dashboard along with Drive Mode selector and Launch Control Uconnect 4C NAV 12-inch touchscreen is standard equipment and includes SiriusXM 360L with Personalized Stations Powered by Pandora, which offers a custom listening experience through a 900-watt, 19-speaker Harman Kardon audio system All-new Head-up Display unit makes its FCA vehicle debut and can show up to five different content areas at once TRX touts the first FCA application of Drive Modes and Off-Road Pages with the Uconnect 4C NAV 12-inch touchscreen New Baja drive mode calibrates four-wheel-drive and steering systems, stability control, paddle shifters and suspension for ultimate desert performance, delivering maximum capability on undulating, loose surfaces Available digital rearview mirror replaces the traditional rearview mirror with a 9.2-inch-wide LCD monitor Trailer Reverse Steer Control is an available standalone option on Ram TRX and uses a dial to point the trailer in the desired direction while the system controls the steering wheel More than 100 active and passive safety and security features, including ParkView rear backup camera with dynamic grid lines, electronic stability control (ESC) with electronic roll mitigation and six air bags. Available features include Blind-spot Monitoring, adaptive cruise control, Ready Alert Braking and Full-Speed Forward Collision Warning-Plus, available All-new 18-by-9-inch aluminum wheels are available in both standard and a beadlock-capable option Goodyear Wrangler Territory 325/65/R18 All-Terrain 35-inch tires, developed exclusively for Ram TRX, achieve unmatched levels of wear resistance, traction and reduced road noise Ram TRX offers the largest front brakes in the segment at 15 inches Ram TRX has a maximum payload of 1,310 pounds and maximum trailer tow of 8,100 pounds Ram TRX features a 2-inch ride height increase over Ram 1500, enabling 11.8 inches of ground clearance and capability of up to 32 inches of water fording All-new 2021 Ram TRX underwent rigorous testing in extreme environments across the continental United States to handle the most punishing conditions with extreme confidence, capability and durability August 17, 2020 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - The all-new 2021 Ram 1500 TRX is the apex predator of the truck world and cements Ram Truck as North America’s off-road truck leader. Ram TRX expands the light-duty lineup and sets new benchmarks for power and performance among half-ton pickup trucks with the 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI® V-8 engine.
      “The all-new 2021 Ram TRX sets the benchmark for extreme performance pickup trucks and solidifies Ram Truck’s position as the off-road truck leader,” said Mike Koval, Head of Ram Brand, FCA - North America. “Ram has a strong history of high-performance trucks and TRX adds to that while expanding the light-duty lineup with the segment’s best combination of performance, capability, luxury and technology.”
      Rated at 702 horsepower and 650 lb.-ft. of torque, the 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI V-8 engine powers the Ram TRX to a top speed of 118 mph. Combined with a high-torque-capacity TorqueFlite eight-speed automatic transmission, the Ram TRX delivers a new level of performance: 0-60 miles per hour (mph) in 4.5 seconds and the quarter mile in 12.9 seconds at 108 mph.
      A proven and reliable high-performance engine, the 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI V-8 engine delivers top output for extended driving sessions without degradation in performance.
      The 2021 Ram TRX benefits from up to 32 inches of water fording, up to 8,100 pounds towing and a maximum payload capacity of 1,310 pounds.
      New aesthetic design pairs chiseled form with extreme function
      The all-new 2021 Ram TRX features an aggressive stance and an impossibly wide, muscular body wrapped over the top of it. Like a mixed martial arts fighter in a tailored tuxedo, the Ram TRX makes an impactful visual statement with an acute “hourglass” body design that features composite flares and fender wells that have been stretched to cover aggressive 35-inch Goodyear Wrangler Territory 325/65/R18 All-Terrain tires.
      Ram TRX is 8 inches wider when compared to the rest of the Ram 1500 lineup, and the composite flares help to compensate for a 6-inch increase in track width. Normally, Ram 1500 features a wheel that is 8 inches wide, but the TRX design team had to accommodate a wheel that is 9 inches wide.
      The front axle was shifted 20 millimeters forward to accommodate the 35-inch Goodyear Territory All-Terrain tires that were designed exclusively for TRX. The 35-inch tires are available with 18-inch beadlock-ready wheels with accent color-matched rings.
      LED clearance marker lights flank the front bumper, creating a menacing light signature that further sets TRX apart from anything on the road – day or night. A new, aluminum hood features bright LED clearance lights that are integrated in the hood scoop.
      The hood scoop is responsible for 50 percent of air entering the 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI V-8 engine while the other 50 percent enters through the grille. Design elements, like the functional hood scoop, are complemented by secondary details, such as the functional air curtain just outboard of the headlamps, relieving high pressure zones at the front corners and allowing air to pass through the fenders.
      A unique R-A-M badge, front grille, hood, skid plates and steel bumpers help the TRX meet extreme functional objectives. The R-A-M badge is bigger when compared to the rest of the Ram 1500 lineup and features a new “flow-through” design that assists with airflow. All-black premium LED headlamps, including twin bi-functional projector headlamps, are standard.
      TRX buyers can choose an optional full-length rock rail for added body/sill protection or traditional off-road powder-coated aluminum running boards. Optional body-side and hood graphics are available as a pair or separately.
      Ram TRX features new box outers made of steel and are wider than that of a traditional Ram 1500. A bed-mounted spare tire carrier is available in addition to the standard full-size spare tire that sits underneath the bed, between the rear axle and trailer hitch. Premium LED taillamps are standard on TRX and the bezels allow for the Blind-spot Monitoring function to see around the extended box outers.
      Closing out the rear of the truck, a large R-A-M badge, similar to that seen on Rebel, stretches across the tailgate. Center identification marker lights, like what is seen on Ram Heavy Duty models, are tucked between the tailgate and rear bumper.
      The new aesthetic is taken to even higher levels of visual impact with oversized tow hooks, found at the front and rear of the truck, and integrated 5-inch dual exhaust ports driving the functional performance objective home.
      High-performance-inspired interior with authentic premium materials
      The 2021 Ram TRX combines all-new features, technology and authentic premium materials with extreme performance, class-leading quality, comfort and durability. The interior design team chose premium textures, colors and material, including available hand-wrapped leather instrument panels for unexpected luxury throughout.
      The all-new 2021 Ram TRX features three interior options, including premium cloth and vinyl, premium wrapped leather and suede, or premium wrapped leather and suede with available red and carbon fiber accents. Based on the Rebel layout, trucks outfitted with a TR Equipment Group will greet occupants with premium cloth and vinyl accents featuring black and Dark Ruby Red surfaces. Opting for the TR1 or TR2 Equipment Group provides an interior based on the Ram 1500 Limited and features an all-black color scheme with leather and suede to give TRX a unique feel. Heated and ventilated premium Natura Plus leather with perforated suede accents cover the front bucket and rear bench seats. The TR1 and TR2 Equipment Groups come standard with medium Greystone stitching and Graphite Metallic accents. The TR2 Equipment Group offers TRX red stitching and carbon fiber accents as an available option.
      Ram TRX features new front seats with enhanced upper bolster support and embroidered logos. TR1 and TR2 Equipment Groups feature a Modular Lightweight Load-bearing Equipment / Pouch Attachment Ladder System (MOLLE/PALS) on the seatback that enables bags and other equipment to be weaved in place.
      A new SRT-signature flat-bottom steering wheel, with enhanced hand grips wrapped in leather with optional suede and carbon fiber accents, enables performance driving. New aluminum paddle shifters stretch above and below the steering wheel spokes, allowing the driver to choose the proper gear with their fingertips.
      A console mounted performance floor shifter, which includes a cast metal main grip wrapped with semi-perforated leather, lends itself to spirited performance driving that TRX was bred for, while maximizing storage. Both the console and paddle shifters mark the debut of each in a Ram truck.
      The Drive Mode selector has been integrated into the dashboard above the transfer case switches and offers different modes of operation, indicated by a TRX pictogram for select environments: Normal, Wet/Snow, Off-road and Baja. A Launch Control button is easily within reach of the driver, sitting to the right of the transfer case switches, and is standard on TRX.
      Reinforcing TRX’s performance chops, an all-new Head-up Display unit can show up to five different content areas at once, including Lane Departure, Lane Keep Assist, adaptive cruise control, turn-by-turn navigation, current speed, current gear and speed limit. The Head-up Display is available on the TR2 Equipment Group and is a full-color unit accessible through the 12-inch Uconnect 4C touchscreen.
      A custom specifications plate on the console lid lists which engine is under the hood, the type of supercharger Ram TRX uses, boost output, horsepower and the vehicle-specific Vehicle Identification Number (VIN).
      A new, innovative dual-path induction system enables extreme performance
      The new 2021 Ram TRX is designed for class-leading, uncompromising performance in the harshest environments. Stratospheric power and performance numbers were achieved in part through a new, innovative dual-path air induction system that ensures the 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI V-8 engine receives a steady supply of clean, cool air regardless of inbound dirt and debris.
      The Ram TRX uses two paths to draw in outside air and routes it to a large, 29-liter air box that filters out dirt, sand, debris and water before getting anywhere near the engine. The innovative dual-path system pulls in outside air from a functional scoop in the hood and the upper edge of the grille. Air entering the grille flows to the bottom front of the air box, guided by tailored panels. The hood scoop ducts air to the bottom rear of the air box via ports that seal to the hood when it is closed. An air box support bar is precision-mounted in the engine compartment during vehicle assembly to ensure the hood intake seals to the air box ducts to prevent engine-heated air from entering the system.
      Directing incoming air to the bottom of the air box helps dirt and water settle out before the air reaches the filter elements, ensuring that the Ram TRX continues to perform in the most grueling environments. A one-way drain in the bottom of the air box evacuates water even when the vehicle is moving. Intake air is drawn upward from the box through twin, heavy-duty air filters that provide 198.4 square inches of filter surface area, four times the dust trapping capacity when compared to the closest competitor, to remove any residual dust or sand before the air is ducted. Unfolded, the filter surface medium covers 13.3 square feet.
      The entire Ram TRX intake system is engineered to minimize power-robbing air restrictions while ensuring only clean, cool air reaches the engine. Industry-standard testing shows that the Ram TRX far exceeds any competitor in the amount of time it can ingest dirty air and debris before performance is diminished. The Ram TRX’s air box is mounted at the top of the engine, making it easy to access should the owner choose to field-clean the high-performance filter elements.
      From modern muscle cars to high-performance SUVs, the 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI V-8 has earned a reputation as a potent, reliable power source that delivers head-turning power when ordered by the driver’s right foot and is also a smooth, efficient power plant at cruising speeds.
      To best match gear selection and shift points to the driver’s demands, the robust TorqueFlite 8HP95 eight-speed automatic transmission monitors inputs, such as engine torque gradients, throttle kick-down, longitudinal and lateral acceleration, detection of friction, downshifts and road grade. This versatile, well-developed, high-torque-capacity, eight-speed transmission delivers quick acceleration and precise, crisp, quick gear changes, enhancing ride quality to luxury car levels with consistent performance and drivability.
      Launch Control is standard with the 2021 Ram TRX and manages tire slip while launching the vehicle to give the driver consistent straight-line acceleration. Wheel speed sensors watch for driveline-damaging wheel hop at launch and, in milliseconds, provide inputs to the powertrain control module to modify the engine torque to regain full grip.
      The Ram TRX is also equipped with Jump Detection, which uses wheel-speed and ride-height sensors and accelerometers at each corner to identify when the vehicle is airborne and acts to prevent driveline-damaging power spikes. Acting in milliseconds, Jump Detection modifies engine speed and torque, gear selection, transfer case torque split, damping rates and other powertrain and suspension components through the landing to deliver optimum performance.
      Dynamic drive modes
      The 2021 Ram TRX uses performance-tuned software to pre-configure and distinguish five dynamic modes – Auto, Sport, Tow, Snow and Custom – enabling drivers to choose a vehicle setting that ideally meets their requirements and ambient conditions. The drive modes separately control the four-wheel-drive system, throttle response, transmission, paddle shifters, suspension and the electric power steering. All modes use active slip control that prevents binding and excessive slip from front to rear.
      Custom mode allows the driver to personalize the vehicle’s performance with a selectable driving experience, offering a multitude of vehicle system combinations.
      Separately, the Ram TRX features three dynamic off-road modes – Mud/Sand, Rock and Baja – enabling drivers to choose a setting that best fits the terrain around them. Like the on-road modes, the off-road drive modes control several systems, including the four-wheel-drive system, throttle response, transmission, paddle shifters, suspension and steering.
      Engineered to handle the most punishing conditions with extreme capability
      Designed bolt by bolt to significantly outperform every other truck, the 2021 Ram TRX has been rigorously tested to handle the most punishing conditions with extreme capability and durability.
      The 2021 Ram TRX’s frame is composed of thicker, optimally shaped, strategically placed high-strength steel that uses low-torsion attributes to increase durability and stability. Sections of the frame are hydroformed for dimensional accuracy, reducing the need for welding, and the side rails are fully boxed. The front rails use high-strength steel and hydroformed sections to set a strong foundation to better handle the front suspension load. Galvanized frame components provide improved corrosion protection.
      The Ram TRX boasts a ground clearance of 11.8 inches due in part to a 2-inch ride height increase when compared with the rest of the 1500 lineup, along with 35-inch tires. This combination enables TRX to clear surface obstacles easily and at high speeds.
      To protect critical components, including the front axle, transfer case, transmission pan and fuel tank, TRX employs five skid plates. A separate skid plate sits at the bottom of the front fascia, mitigating potential damage, and doubles as a belly pan. Heavy-duty gauge steel rock sliders are an available option.
      The use of lightweight, high-strength aluminum closures, including the doors, hood and tailgate, help reduce weight and boost fuel economy. Ram TRX also uses aluminum engine mounts, front axle center section, front suspension and transmission cross-members, front upper and lower control arms, front skid plate, transmission skid plate and steering system gear.
      An all-new independent front suspension system with active damping uses high-strength aluminum to maintain overall strength and durability. The all-new independent front suspension system includes new front upper and lower control arms made of forged aluminum with special attention paid to the caster and camber angles during suspension cycling. The new, longer, substantially sized front upper and lower control arms are constructed of 80-ksi high-strength steel and designed with a focus on additional wheel travel and axle track width. This new suspension system features upgraded components to provide more performance and improved endurance.
      Out back, the Ram TRX’s rear suspension had to clear packaging barriers and the engineering team took that into consideration with this unique application. The result is an innovative and durable solution that produces greater wheel travel without reducing cargo area in the bed.
      The 2021 Ram TRX uses an all-new rear suspension system with active damping and an exclusive five-link coil system for incredible ride characteristics and durability. The frame’s hard points for the five-link suspension system differ when compared to a standard-issue Ram 1500 and allow the Dana 60 rear axle to travel up to 13 inches. Overall, rear-wheel travel is increased to more than 13 inches from the standard 9 inches, or more than 40 percent when compared to the rest of the Ram 1500 lineup.
      The 2021 Ram TRX uses the proven five-link coil suspension configuration and provides better articulation over obstacles than a leaf-spring system. This suspension design reduces friction in the spring system and weighs significantly less than a comparable leaf spring system. At 600 millimeters in length, the robust rear springs are the largest ever applied on a non-commercial production vehicle.
      The robust coil springs are more than up to the task of handling a maximum payload of 1,310 pounds and towing capability of 8,100 pounds.
      New 2.5-inch Bilstein Black Hawk e2 adaptive performance shocks use precision-machined, single-piece construction comprised of rigid aluminum to reduce and dissipate heat and continuously adjust damping forces for optimal body control and terrain isolation. The adaptive performance shocks feature robust corrosion protection with a durable finish and directional-machined cooling fins aligned with air flow for more effective cooling.
      Dual Electronic Proportional Valves continuously adjust damping forces for precise, independent control of compression and rebound damping. A nitrogen-charged remote reservoir uses a hot-formed, zero-leak tube closure to ensure maximum durability during extreme on- and off-road events.
      A pressure-activated Triple Rod seal has been field-tested for long-lasting durability against contamination and leaks. Ram TRX uses stainless steel braided high-pressure hose to combat corrosion and abrasion while being able to resist up to 5,800 PSI. A high-strength, lightweight rock shield defends the piston rod against incoming rubble with a custom molded escape path for debris.
      The Bilstein Black Hawk e2 adaptive performance shocks have been tuned to demonstrate optimum balance between on-road handling and class-leading off-road capability. Ride comfort, body roll control and handling are significantly improved with the Ram-proprietary Active Terrain Dynamics suspension management system, new shock tuning, hard points and body mount strategy.
      In addition to a standard urethane jounce bumper, the internals of the Bilstein adaptive performance shock feature a Jounce Cut Off to create three zones for progressive bottom-out control during extreme compression events. All modes can reach peak compression damping for the most extreme events.
      The 2021 Ram TRX is a high-performance pickup truck built to handle the most punishing conditions with extreme capability and durability. To clear the elevated benchmarks and performance figures that TRX presents, a Dana 60 rear axle with full floating axle shafts is standard equipment and handles the increased torque output, rear electronic locking differential and 35-inch tires. The Dana 60 rear axle uses an axle hop damper that enables improved traction and axle control on rough surfaces. A new rear axle center section provides balanced performance and a locking differential for increased off-road performance.
      The Ram TRX is equipped with a new BorgWarner 48-13 full-time active transfer case that enables passage through any off-road obstruction or weather condition. This modified transfer case features upgraded internals for improved strength and durability. Ram TRX features a low range of 2.64:1 for rock crawling and can be flat-towed while in neutral.
      Off road, the 2021 Ram TRX will race to 100 mph with ease, and the segment’s largest brakes bring the TRX to a composed halt. Ram TRX relies on a four-wheel disc brake system and a hydraulic compensation unit to enhance brake pedal feel and performance during emergency maneuvers. Up front are two-piston monoblock calipers clamping down on 15-inch inverted hat (outboard venting) rotors for improved cooling. The rear uses single piston calipers with 15-inch rotors to provide incredible stopping power. An electronic parking brake holds the truck steady when applied and is standard.
      For the 2021 Ram TRX, engineers found that to maximize capability, it would call for a 35-inch tire. Developed exclusively for the Ram TRX, 35-inch Goodyear Wrangler Territory All-Terrain 325/65R/18 tires, featuring an aggressive tread and sidewall with D-load rating, are assigned the task.
      There are two different wheel designs that are available on TRX, including an 18-by-9-inch optional beadlock-ready wheel straight from the factory.
      An approach angle of 30.2 degrees, breakover angle of 21.9 degrees, departure angle of 23.5 degrees and a ground clearance of 11.8 inches allow the Ram TRX to go anywhere.
      Most technologically advanced pickup ever loaded with innovative, customizable features
      Designed to be the most technologically advanced pickup ever, the new 2021 Ram TRX is loaded with an array of innovative features combined with the award-winning fourth-generation Uconnect system that offers convenience and connected services, keeping Ram truck customers engaged and informed all while keeping their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road or desert path ahead.
      The 2021 Ram TRX interior’s high-tech centerpiece, the Uconnect 4C NAV 12-inch fully configurable touchscreen, is standard and allows for even more customization. Other features include SiriusXM with 360L, Personalized Stations Powered by Pandora and personal device integration.
      The touchscreen can house one application, such as the navigation map, across the entire 12-inch screen or can be divided in half, operating two different applications at once. A multifunction switch bank and the optional Trailer Reverse Steer Control sit below the touchscreen, giving physical control of specific features. Redundant HVAC controls are located on both sides of the display.
      An audiophile-quality audio system is offered to immerse passengers in the ultimate sound experience, including a class-exclusive 900-watt premium Harman Kardon audio system with 19 speakers and 10-inch subwoofer – the finest and most powerful audio system available in a pickup.
      Ram TRX uses a 7-inch thin-film transistor (TFT) cluster that is exclusive to the model and features a lit TRX badge, unique TRX colors and graphics with reconfigurable gauges. The same graphics appear on the 12-inch Uconnect 4C touchscreen, too. This is the first time that Drive Modes and Off-road Performance Pages are displayed on the 12-inch Uconnect 4C screen.
      Performance Pages
      Performance Pages give drivers the tools necessary to become familiar with their vehicle’s performance. The app provides access to real-time vehicle performance information, including timers (such as 0-60 mph elapsed time), g-force, gauges and engine performance. This data can be downloaded to a USB stick, allowing for easy sharing of your driving performance. Owners can also download data to the web. The introduction of the Ram TRX marks the first time Performance Pages is available on an FCA vehicle equipped with the Uconnect 4C NAV with 12-inch display.
      Off-Road Pages
      Off-Road Pages show ride height, the transfer case’s position, the pitch and roll of the vehicle and accessory gauges. The app is accessible through the 7-inch TFT cluster or Uconnect 4C NAV with 12-inch display. The introduction of the Ram TRX marks the first time Off-Road Pages is available on an FCA vehicle equipped with the Uconnect 4C NAV with 12-inch display.
      Forward-facing Camera
      As part of the available 360-degree Surround View Camera system, a forward-facing off-road camera allows obstructions ahead on the trail to be easily seen. The front camera sits under the crossbar that dissects TRX’s grille and can be accessed through the available Off-Road Pages.
      Digital Rearview Mirror
      An available digital rearview mirror option replaces the traditional rearview mirror with a 9.2-inch-wide LCD monitor. The digital rearview mirror displays video in real time from a rear-facing camera and can be turned off to revert back to a traditional reflective mirror.
      More than 100 available advanced safety and security features
      Safety and security were primary drivers in the development of the new 2021 Ram TRX, which offers more than 100 available active and passive safety and security features. Standard features include ParkView rear backup camera with dynamic grid lines, electronic stability control (ESC) with electronic roll mitigation and six standard air bags. Available features include Blind-spot Monitoring, adaptive cruise control, Ready Alert Braking and Full-Speed Forward Collision Warning-Plus.

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