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"Looks Good on Paper, Feels Better in Person:" C/D Tests Ram EcoDiesel

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It was a Big Horn with the 5 1/2 foot bed and 3:92 rear end, so the driveline was identical to mine. Some quotes:

"Ram announced late last year that 20 percent of all 1500 pickup production capacity—fully twice the projected figure—was dedicated to the EcoDiesel, and it remains higher than 15 percent. That statement should come as little surprise, as diesels typically offer two things truck buyers covet: torque and efficiency"

"Rated to tow an SAE J2807-certified 8560 pounds, the EcoDiesel bests an equivalent 1500 3.6-liter, which is rated for 7180 pounds."

"While these numbers accurately reflect capability, it’s easy to lend too much credence to paper victories when comparing trucks. Based on our real-world experience, the EcoDiesel’s torque and its linear response make it a perfect partner for truck duty regardless of payload."

"As for efficiency, the situation is a bit more complicated... you’re in for nearly $5K before you burn through your first tank of diesel fuel."

"With EPA ratings of 19 mpg city and 27 highway, the Ram 1500 EcoDiesel tops the 16/23 estimates for the V-6 1500 Crew Cab and the 15/21 numbers for the same truck with the 5.7-liter Hemi and eight-speed auto. In our hands, the EcoDiesel returned 21 mpg in combined driving... when considered against the 15 mpg we saw in our test of a 2013 Ram 1500 V-6 and the 17 mpg of our 40,000-mile, long-term Ram 1500 Crew Cab V-6, the EcoDiesel’s 22 mpg is an impressive number... the zero-to-60-mph number, with the EcoDiesel [takes] 9.0 seconds, a full 1.2 longer than our departed long-term V-6 Ram. The quarter-mile measure fared similarly.. but where the gasoline V-6 sometimes feels strained, the EcoDiesel just powers through, as if saying to the driver, 'Yeah, what else ya got?'”

"The wild card here, of course, is the Ford F-150 3.5-liter EcoBoost. Not content to simply match the EcoDiesel’s 420 lb-ft of torque, the twin-turbo EcoBoost V-6 keeps 365 horsepower on tap, sufficient to knock out a 14.4-second quarter-mile time, as measured in our testing. At the same time, however, the Ford returned just 16 mpg in combined driving. Interestingly, despite an aluminum-intensive construction, the 2015 F-150 Crew Cab EcoBoost 4x4 we tested weighed in at 5577 pounds, just 111 pounds fewer than the Ram 1500 EcoDiesel."

"No spreadsheet can illuminate how right the EcoDiesel feels from the driver’s seat."

Feel free to read more at

http://m.caranddriver.com/reviews/2015-ram-1500-4x4-ecodiesel-4x4-test-review

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The caveats about diesel are relavant-it CAN be more expensive than gas, and there is a price premium to the truck.

But as I've also said: right now diesel is quits a bit cheaper where I live, you recoup some of they upfront price on trade in, and you're looking at upwards of 40% better real-world mileage over some (still disturbingly tubby, as it turns out) competition. Based on my experience, if you can swing for it, it's a fantastic driveline.

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The caveats about diesel are relavant-it CAN be more expensive than gas, and there is a price premium to the truck.

But as I've also said: right now diesel is quits a bit cheaper where I live, you recoup some of they upfront price on trade in, and you're looking at upwards of 40% better real-world mileage over some (still disturbingly tubby, as it turns out) competition. Based on my experience, if you can swing for it, it's a fantastic driveline.

 

I'm interested in it because, while I do need a truck for short distance hauling, I also need a vehicle that is comfortable for long distance trips.... not with any payload or anything... just something a sedan could accommodate.

 

But I don't have room for two vehicles.  A low-mileage Avalanche is the top of my list right now, but if I find a deal on an EcoDiesel Ram.... well... 

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It is large. If you do a LOT of urban driving it may test your patience. And...

End of complaints. It is a superb truck. And one we now know isn't as heavy as we thought it might be, at certain trim levels.

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Curious why they compared the much more capable 3.5L in fuel economy , and not the 2.7L which is closely aligned in capability, etc.  

 

Give me the lighter, faster, quieter, safer, cheaper vehicle that happens to haul at least twice as much.

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I do find it odd they compared it to the 3.5 EB at all.. They had to have run a 2.7 by now to give those numbers.

 

21mpg from this truck tells a lot about the drivers..hooning the heck out of it.

 

16.9 second quarter mile time.. I love the diesel economy and I'm a pretty passive driver but that might be too slow. I'd still give it a fair chance if I were in the market for a truck because the economy can be that good.

 

To the odd comparison.. 16mpg in the 3.5EB, 17mpg in their long term 3.6. 14.4sec quarter vs 16.0sec. For 1mpg..Not bad. (price is another thing to debate over though - the difference from base 3.6 to 3.5EB in cost).

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The biggest shocker is just how heavy that Ford was. Wow

It was a Platinum Suber Crew with 4WD.. I mean it was probably within 25lbs of the most it could possibly weigh with every option possible on it. ..in all fairness..lol

 

To me the biggest shocker was the 16.9sec quarter of the diesel. I knew it wasn't going to be blowing doors off of anything and it is obviously designed more around daily driving and fuel economy but I didn't expect a (basically) 17 second quarter mile time. I mean a 1.0 Fiesta is quicker than that.. I genuinely am not trying to be a dick and make a "troll" post but it really did surprise me with that time.

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The thing about the diesel is that, UNLIKE the EB, it delivers both its performance and economy numbers all the time. In casual driving, when you're in a hurry, stop and go, whatever-you will nearly always get those numbers. Which means that, while you may not be able to keep up with Hemi R/Ts, you never feel like the truck is straining to merge, or keep up in speed zone changes.

The last sentence I quoted was the clincher-it really does just feel RIGHT, especially for a truck. If you want the latent shame of driving an "Eco" Boost that will only average mid-teens mpg, that's between you and your conscience.

As for me, I'm doing a round trip between Edmonton and the oil patch on my days off. It'll come to about 600 miles round-trip, and I fully expect that the truck will do it on less than a tank of fuel.

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To me the biggest shocker was the 16.9sec quarter of the diesel. I knew it wasn't going to be blowing doors off of anything and it is obviously designed more around daily driving and fuel economy but I didn't expect a (basically) 17 second quarter mile time. I mean a 1.0 Fiesta is quicker than that.. I genuinely am not trying to be a dick and make a "troll" post but it really did surprise me with that time.

 

 

I agree, the acceleration is about half a second slower than I'd want. I hope the Colorado/Canyon diesel is a bit quicker. I like everything about the Ram Ecodiesel other than that, though. Reviews say paired to the 8-speed auto, the truck just surfs a wave of immense torque so it doesn't feel slow until you're gunning it.

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The thing about the diesel is that, UNLIKE the EB, it delivers both its performance and economy numbers all the time. In casual driving, when you're in a hurry, stop and go, whatever-you will nearly always get those numbers. Which means that, while you may not be able to keep up with Hemi R/Ts, you never feel like the truck is straining to merge, or keep up in speed zone changes.

The last sentence I quoted was the clincher-it really does just feel RIGHT, especially for a truck. If you want the latent shame of driving an "Eco" Boost that will only average mid-teens mpg, that's between you and your conscience.

As for me, I'm doing a round trip between Edmonton and the oil patch on my days off. It'll come to about 600 miles round-trip, and I fully expect that the truck will do it on less than a tank of fuel.

Yeah that isn't much performance though.. 17 second quarter mile.. It basically JUST gets great fuel economy, which there is nothing wrong with that. that is what it was intended to do and it does it. ..It can't keep up with Fiestas let alone Ram R/Ts..lol

 

I will agree with from what I've read that daily driving without an agressive foot it is fantastic because all of the low end tq. Exactly like cp said, "surfs a wave of immense torque so it doesn't feel slow until you're gunning it." But with that said..That is why I got the 2.0EB over the 1.6EB. I want passing power if I need it, or whatever rare situation I may find myself in. I want to be able to stand on the "go" pedal and not have issues. The acceleration is so polarizing to me because on one hand I don't drive aggressively and don't need a wicked top end and 420lb/ft is definitely adequate for 99% of the time. But on the other hand..that's slow.. 

 

Oh I guarantee you can do that in less than one tank no problem. 36 gallon tank? easy 26mpg(being conservative). My friend's '10 Cummins when he filled up had a range of 540 miles and that's before we got 19mpg for our trip. You'll be deep into the 20's.

 

Actually, does that have an instant mpg readout? If so.. Few questions.. First, what is the minimum speed that it'll drop into 8th gear? Second, at that speed can you set cruise and see what your mpg is? I bet it'll be some stupid 30+. I wouldnt doubt 31..32.. Or even higher. I don't know how fast it has to be going to finally drop into 8th but I know in my 2.0 if I set cruise at 50mph I can easily see 35mpg. And they are rated very similar(my 2.0 and your 3.0 - mine is rated 21/28).

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To me the biggest shocker was the 16.9sec quarter of the diesel. I knew it wasn't going to be blowing doors off of anything and it is obviously designed more around daily driving and fuel economy but I didn't expect a (basically) 17 second quarter mile time. I mean a 1.0 Fiesta is quicker than that.. I genuinely am not trying to be a dick and make a "troll" post but it really did surprise me with that time.

 

 

I agree, the acceleration is about half a second slower than I'd want. I hope the Colorado/Canyon diesel is a bit quicker. I like everything about the Ram Ecodiesel other than that, though. Reviews say paired to the 8-speed auto, the truck just surfs a wave of immense torque so it doesn't feel slow until you're gunning it.

 

 

Yeah, the torque off the line is fantastic, you never feel slow unless you're flooring it and realize there is nothing left above what you normally drive.  However, you can do that with a 20ft boat out back and your acceleration will basically be unchanged.

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The thing about the diesel is that, UNLIKE the EB, it delivers both its performance and economy numbers all the time. In casual driving, when you're in a hurry, stop and go, whatever-you will nearly always get those numbers. Which means that, while you may not be able to keep up with Hemi R/Ts, you never feel like the truck is straining to merge, or keep up in speed zone changes.

The last sentence I quoted was the clincher-it really does just feel RIGHT, especially for a truck. If you want the latent shame of driving an "Eco" Boost that will only average mid-teens mpg, that's between you and your conscience.

As for me, I'm doing a round trip between Edmonton and the oil patch on my days off. It'll come to about 600 miles round-trip, and I fully expect that the truck will do it on less than a tank of fuel.

Yeah that isn't much performance though.. 17 second quarter mile.. It basically JUST gets great fuel economy, which there is nothing wrong with that. that is what it was intended to do and it does it. ..It can't keep up with Fiestas let alone Ram R/Ts..lol

 

I will agree with from what I've read that daily driving without an agressive foot it is fantastic because all of the low end tq. Exactly like cp said, "surfs a wave of immense torque so it doesn't feel slow until you're gunning it." But with that said..That is why I got the 2.0EB over the 1.6EB. I want passing power if I need it, or whatever rare situation I may find myself in. I want to be able to stand on the "go" pedal and not have issues. The acceleration is so polarizing to me because on one hand I don't drive aggressively and don't need a wicked top end and 420lb/ft is definitely adequate for 99% of the time. But on the other hand..that's slow.. 

 

Oh I guarantee you can do that in less than one tank no problem. 36 gallon tank? easy 26mpg(being conservative). My friend's '10 Cummins when he filled up had a range of 540 miles and that's before we got 19mpg for our trip. You'll be deep into the 20's.

 

Actually, does that have an instant mpg readout? If so.. Few questions.. First, what is the minimum speed that it'll drop into 8th gear? Second, at that speed can you set cruise and see what your mpg is? I bet it'll be some stupid 30+. I wouldnt doubt 31..32.. Or even higher. I don't know how fast it has to be going to finally drop into 8th but I know in my 2.0 if I set cruise at 50mph I can easily see 35mpg. And they are rated very similar(my 2.0 and your 3.0 - mine is rated 21/28).

Thing is, I don't have a 36-gallon tank. Mine is 98 Litres, or 26 US gallons. It'll probably do the deed all the same.

If I were to guess I'd say that it'll shift into eighth as low as 30-35 mph if you drive gently. I know it'll go into third at parking-lot speeds. At this point I should point out that this would suck if it had the old six-speed auto and its lurchy shift quality-the eight-speed is amazingly smooth.

The prairies are smooth and flat-I could easily do 30+mpg on those. Northern Alberta, though... bit hillier. I'll still do good, but probably not THAT good.

Finally, acceleration: it really isn't that big a deal. In my experience driving, if you're in a situation where you need acceleration (and that situation is not of you own making :P ), the best source of speed change is the brake pedal.

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To me the biggest shocker was the 16.9sec quarter of the diesel. I knew it wasn't going to be blowing doors off of anything and it is obviously designed more around daily driving and fuel economy but I didn't expect a (basically) 17 second quarter mile time. I mean a 1.0 Fiesta is quicker than that.. I genuinely am not trying to be a dick and make a "troll" post but it really did surprise me with that time.

 

 

I agree, the acceleration is about half a second slower than I'd want. I hope the Colorado/Canyon diesel is a bit quicker. I like everything about the Ram Ecodiesel other than that, though. Reviews say paired to the 8-speed auto, the truck just surfs a wave of immense torque so it doesn't feel slow until you're gunning it.

 

 

Yeah, the torque off the line is fantastic, you never feel slow unless you're flooring it and realize there is nothing left above what you normally drive.  However, you can do that with a 20ft boat out back and your acceleration will basically be unchanged.

 

 

Exactly. It tows just as well as any V8, or better in some cases, and lets you crack 30 mpg under the right circumstances. The 420 lb-ft of torque is ALWAYS available.

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