We always love getting a week with a truck. Having a chance to drive one of the largest currently on the market was no exception.
We quickly learned, though, that a truck this big does present a number of different challenges that we have not faced with smaller, shorter trucks.
First off, this 2019 Ram comes in at just over 259 inches in length, or, doing the math, just over 20.5 feet long. That makes the turning radius over 49 feet, and we quickly learned that the 3500 will not go just anywhere and, more precisely, we found it would not park just anywhere. As a side note, it is 96.1 inches wide with the dual rear tires just over 8 feet.
The Ram doesn’t exactly turn on a dime or fit in the normal parking space — or garage — as I found on my first venture to work, when I had to park in the vacant lot next to the Wells Fargo Building parking garage in downtown Provo. We found that there was some planning involved wherever we went with the truck, even parking it for the night, as it has to occupy the last spot in the driveway at the end of the day.
After our first venture out in the large truck, we had to wonder, why would someone want such an enormous truck? For the answer to that question, we turned to our neighbor, Andrade Christensen, who is a developer and has a company that prepares and builds roads. His quick answer was that it can pull pretty much anything that needed pulling. He himself has a Ram 3500, but with only two wheels on the back as opposed to the four tires or dual arrangement that came with our test ride. For him, it was a necessity and just another tool for his business.
By the numbers, the Ram can pull, and it can pull a lot. Equipped with a 6.7-liter diesel engine that puts out 385 horsepower and an incredible 1000 ft.-lbs. of torque, it can be loaded down with 7,680 pounds of payload and still pull 35,100 pounds. In our book, that adds up to weight that we could only hope to pull in four different trips with our Ram 1500.
We had to turn to Google to see what else weighed in at 30,000 pounds, and, after giving us many examples of how to convert British currency (obviously what we really wanted to know. Sometimes even Google struggles to find the right answer!), we did eventually find a site that listed some objects that would hit this high weight limit.
On the British side, the largest bell in London or Big Ben comes in at that weight, Node 2 the second of three connectors in the International Space Station is the right weight, along with the anchor taken off of the aircraft carrier Antietam which also hits the mark. These are some pretty big objects that the Ram would have no problem towing cross country.
Our test ride came in the Limited edition, which proved to be loaded with everything we could have imagined in a truck. The beautiful brown interior was our favorite part, with stitched leather trim. There were even included “saddle bags” on the back of the front seats instead of a pocket like the norm. What a commitment on Ram’s part to the American cowboy and the rodeos they sponsor.
Seating in the back was cavernous, to say the least, with plenty of room for three large adults to sit in comfort and enjoy any length of haul. The rear seats could fold up and included Ram’s fold-down accessories that allow for the rear deck to be level with the seats, allowing for even more inside hauling. Of course, the two extra floor bins on each side of the truck were there, making for an extra place to put small tools and other items.
The seats were heated and cooled up front and heated in the rear, and the truck also featured a heated steering wheel, all of which were very handy to help enjoy the spring Utah weather that could not decide if was still winter or spring.
The new extra-large 12-inch touchscreen that Ram introduced last year really became the focal point of the interior. Besides the extra cool factor it added, it was also handy to navigate and use controlling many functions in the truck. It made for a great backup camera, very helpful then attaching a trailer.
There were many additions to the Longhorn we drove, not the least of which was the Aisin six-speed transmission coupled with the 6.7-liter diesel engine that together added just over $10,000 to the cost of the truck. However, if pulling and the long haul were requirements of going large, we decided that these upgrades were necessities and not really options.
Things like automatic headlamps and the sunroof would fall more into the option category. We enjoyed them, but they would not be necessary. There was also an included fifth-wheel gooseneck towing that would help with the hauling of any type of trailer.
The Limited edition was definitely a beautiful and luxurious truck that would make getting everything hauled to the job site a very enjoyable experience. For and everyday drivers, it would be a challenge in the city. However, out in the country, it would be a great space to be in day after day.
Base price: $65,250
Price as driven: $87,810