- Dec 11, 2005
Direct LinkThe 2019 Crew Cab is as much as 225 pounds lighter than before thanks to careful weight-loss engineering throughout the truck. An aluminum tailgate, for instance, cuts 15 pounds. Another 100 pounds or so came out thanks to more extensive use of high-strength steels (plus a few bits of aluminum) in the frame; it’s now 98 percent high-strength steel. Another 100 pounds or so came out of the cab and box. The majority of the bodywork, however, is still made from various types of steel, not aluminum; Ram is not following the Ford F-Series down the road of all-aluminum bodywork just yet.
“We’ve left steel where we need to deliver the long-term durability that we believe our owners want,” says Jim Morrison, head of the Ram brand.
To complement the reduced weight and improved aero, the Ram 1500 also introduces mild-hybrid powertrains. Standard on the 3.6-liter V6 and optional on the 5.7-liter V8, the “E-Torque” system uses a beefed-up, 48-volt starter-generator to provide extra grunt for low-speed acceleration – similar to the mild-hybrid system on the Jeep Wrangler. A 0.43-kWh lithium-ion battery pack sits in the back wall of the cab, cooled by cabin air.
Ram says the system will offer 90 pound-feet of extra torque during acceleration on the V6 engine, and an extra 130 lb-ft on the V8. The system is said to be able to restart the engine in a third of a second (e.g. after a stop-start situation at a traffic light), and can use the torque assistance to smooth out engine idle. On the V8, it also allows the engine to use its fuel-saving cylinder deactivation mode more frequently by balancing out spikes in engine loading that would otherwise kick the V8 back into eight-cylinder operation.
The V6 engine is rated for 305 horsepower and 269 lb-ft of torque (identical to the outgoing model), while the V8 boasts 395 hp and 410 lb-ft. An eight-speed automatic remains the only transmission choice, though it’s been updated and now has as many as 40 shift schedules to improve efficiency. At some point after launch, the 3.0-liter EcoDiesel V6 engine will return to the roster.
For off-roaders, there will once again be a Rebel variant, with a one-inch suspension lift, 18-inch wheels with 33-inch tires, Bilstein shocks, functional recovery hooks, a locking rear differential, and a specially designed face to offer a dose of visual toughness. Where the old one was offered only with air suspension, the 2019 Rebel will also be available with steel springs, a nod to enthusiasts who want to modify their trucks. Other Ram 1500 variants will be able to enjoy the 4x4 Off-Road package, which brings many of those upgrades to other trim levels.