Ram redesigned its 1500 truck last year, and it continues to be a top-rated truck. All Ram 1500 trims come with excellent driving dynamics, generously appointed interiors, and a unique rear suspension for the class. With it, the Ram glides past competitors with a ride quality more commonly associated with cars. Truck duties are not a problem either — the Ram 1500 offers comparable maximum ratings for both towing and payload capacity.
New this year is a diesel-powered turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 known as the EcoDiesel. It also allows for a stout maximum tow rating of 12,560 pounds. The cabin is another clear win for the Ram. Highlights include comfortable seats, high-quality materials, and an easy-to-use touchscreen infotainment system. Move through the options list and the Ram 1500 really begins to shine. Higher trims offer even greater levels of luxury. And the truck has unmatched storage solutions from a large, configurable center console to spacious in-floor bins and locking compartments built into the side of its bed. There are no significant differences between the gasoline-powered 2020 Ram 1500 and our long-term Ram. Ram has a V8 engine and eight-speed transmission. They work so well together that we could recommend this truck on that basis alone. It’s strong, and it’s easy to drive in just about every situation. The same can largely be said for the newly reintroduced EcoDiesel powertrain — especially if you appreciate the pulling power of diesel torque.
But there’s much more to the Ram than solid powertrain choices. I was impressed with their steady steering, confident braking, and secure handling. Ram’s decade-old decision to walk away from leaf springs and switch to a coil-spring rear suspension continues to pay dividends. We’re surprised no one has followed its lead.
Wind and road noise are minimal, particularly in higher trim levels. Even the rumbling V8 provides only a soothing soundtrack unless you decide to open it up. The Ram 1500 expertly soaks up varying road imperfections and does it without the rough ride you’d normally expect from a light-duty pickup. The front seats are nicely shaped to provide comfort and support over long distances. The rear bench has an agreeable backrest angle, and it reclines. The Ram 1500’s has an effective climate control system, which offers rear center A/C vents even if you get three-across front seating.
The Ram 1500 crew cab’s interior is a pleasing place to spend time. The doors open wide to make it easy to get in, and all four doors have their own chunky and well-positioned grab handles. For the driver, there are easy-to-reach controls and a commanding view of the road. Passengers in any seat will find plenty of headroom, legroom and shoulder room. The cabin is spacious, and the Ram has more rear legroom and foot clearance than competing trucks. Although the rearview mirror is a bit small, the Ram’s large windows and clever hood design help with outward visibility overall.
Tow ratings, particularly for the diesel, are stout for this class. With the V8 or the diesel engine, most of the Ram 1500’s common configurations can pull more than 11,000 pounds. The optional RamBox locking bins built into the side of the bed are useful for storing tools or towing equipment. There’s also an optional two-way tailgate that can open downward or like doors. Interior storage space is another area where the truck shines. Its center console is enormous and highly configurable.
The Ram can be ordered with hidden compartment spaces in the rear floor, underneath the rear seats or in the back cushions themselves. The rear seat folds up as one piece or in a 60/40-split on higher trims. The interior build quality available here leaves the competition miles behind, and pricing isn’t much different from what rival’s charge.