You won't find a better bang for your buck among pickup trucks than the 2016 Ram 1500. The vehicle delivers all of the attributes that customers have come to expect from the brand: power, style, and cargo room. With the low $26,145 starting MSRP, you'll be hard-pressed to find a more affordable and capable pickup truck on the market.
Now, we're not exaggerating. The 2016 Ram 1500 has actually been awarded for its affordability. The nameplate has been named U.S. News and World Report's "Best Full-Size Truck for the Money" for the past three years. The publication compares all of the candidates from a particular segment, and they then compile all of the applicable professional reviews for each individual model. The judges will also monitor the "long-term" value of the vehicle, commending those that have proven to deliver reliability and an affordable five-year total cost of ownership.
"At Ram, we set out to create the best trucks in the market, and this award from U.S. News acknowledges the positive quality and value equation of our Ram 1500," said Mike Manley, the Head of Ram Truck Brand. "In a highly competitive segment, Ram is committed to technology and innovative leadership. Proof of that commitment is a long list of best-in-class titles, including America’s most fuel-efficient full-size pickup at 29 mpg."
Ram's engineers have truly been looking for several ways to add more grandeur to their pickup truck. The various engine options contribute to that goal, as does its eye-catching interior and exterior style. Let's explore some of these features and capabilities and get more clarity on why the 2016 Ram 1500 is truly the "Best Full-Size Truck for the Money."
A quick lesson in what's featured under the 1500's hood will help customers understand why the pickup offers such a bang for your buck. These capable engine options are often reserved for much more expensive pickups, and you'll rarely see a unit that's both powerful and fuel efficient. Plus, Ram provides three different options to choose from, providing unmatched versatility.
The accompanying mechanics help round out the driving experience, providing drivers with optimal handling and drivability. You'd be challenged to find similar performance capabilities from a similarly-priced pickup.
Three Engine Options
The 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 may deliver the lowest power specs among the 1500's engine offerings, but that's not meant to discredit the unit. Owners can expect 305 horsepower and 269 pounds-feet of torque, resulting in a solid 7,610-pound towing capacity. Thanks to the Variable Valve Timing, owners will also appreciate the 18 city/25 highway mile per gallon fuel efficiency.
The 5.7-liter HEMI V8 provides the most power among the three options at 395 horsepower and 410 pounds-feet of torque. The engine transforms the pickup into a towing behemoth, as the truck can haul 10,650 pounds. Plus, due to the inclusion of the Fuel Saver Technology, drivers can expect a 15 city/22 highway mile per gallon fuel efficiency.
Finally, the 3.0-liter EcoDiesel V6 isn't only for those who prefer diesel engines. The unit is also extremely clean, with emissions falling below each of the state's restrictions. The unit is plenty powerful at 240 horsepower and 420 pounds-feet of torque, resulting in the 9,210-pound towing capacity. The unit is also the most efficient of the bunch, coming in at 21 city/29 highway mile per gallon.
The class-exclusive Active-Level Four-Corner Air Suspension system was designed for optimal performance and handling. The vehicle can be adjusted to one of five different riding heights, making it the perfect choice for the worksite. These sensors will even adjust the truck's height when traveling at high speeds, thus reducing drag and improving fuel efficiency.
Meanwhile, the TorqueFlite 8 eight-speed transmission helps accentuate the capabilities of the pickup's three engine options. Acceleration is improved on the low gears, while the accompanying panel-mounted Rotary E-shift provides effortless transitions between them.
You don't often associate style with pickup trucks, but the engineers over at Ram have made a commitment to eliminating that notion. The 2016 Ram 1500 is among the most stylish trucks in the entire class thanks to the sharp exterior angles and the refined interior.
These styling cues also enhance the entire driving experience. Several exterior features improve the vehicle's performance, while the amenities like the RamBox cargo system provide unmatched convenience and storage capabilities.
You're likely familiar with the 1500's handsome and sculpted design, but were you aware that these styling cues also impact the vehicle's performance? The Active Air Grille Shutters (which come standard on all models) certainly add a bit of glamor to the pickup's aesthetics, but also improve the vehicle's drag and efficiency. With cold air better able to reach the engine, drivers can also expect optimal performance.
Those who work in a labor-intensive field will certainly appreciate the RamBox Cargo Management System. The lit and securable storage box provides a safe place for owners to hide their most valuable equipment or cargo. Thanks to the AllSecure remote security system, owners won't have to worry about any unwelcome guests accessing the unit.
The Ram 1500 is covered in soft-touch materials, including premium leather, which help convey a luxurious feel. The designers' inclusion of real wood and accent stitching may even result in some passengers forgetting that they're traveling in a pickup.
Predictably, the interior is highlighted by the technology. The Uconnect system delivers an available 8.4-inch touchscreen display that provides access to navigation, radio, and a number of other useful applications. Thanks to the steering wheel-mounted buttons, drivers can access any of the system's features without taking their eyes off the road or hands off the wheel.
Meanwhile, the customizable multiview dial provides a seven-inch color display that delivers a variety of essential information. Drivers can rely on a number of different meters, and they can manipulate the system to access essential information (like vehicle diagnostics).
“The Ram 1500 gives buyers a first-class ownership experience, with a luxurious interior and performance that’s capable enough for traditional truck tasks, but comfortable enough for everyday driving,” said Jamie Page Deaton, the Managing Editor of U.S. News Best Cars. “When you combine that with its low long-term ownership costs, you have a truck that easily fits into owners’ lives and their budgets.”
We usually like to focus on attributes that don't apply to the value of the vehicle, but there's no denying that the 2016 Ram 1500 has one of the best price tags in its class. Considering all that this pickup has to offer, the nameplate has certainly earned the distinction of being the "Best Full-Size Truck for the Money."