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Ram 2500 Tradesman Vs. Big Horn Vs. Laramie —Which Is Right For You?

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Are you planning to buy a Ram 2500, but you’re not sure which trim is the right choice for your needs? Or perhaps you're building a fleet and wanted to know which Ram 2500 fits best? Worry no more, for we have researched this question and have the answer here for you.

If you need a good truck for a commercial fleet, then the Ram 2500 Tradesman is the best choice among the three options. On the other hand, the Ram 2500 Laramie is best suited for extended off-road hauling. Lastly, the Ram 2500 Big Horn is best for tasks that mix the capabilities of the first two.

However, these three trims have features that can make them useful for other functions in addition to the ones listed above. The Ram 2500 trims are made for manual work, and they are good at what they do. Let’s look deeper into the features of each trim of the two model years—2021 and 2022—that are available to help you decide which one is best. Read on!

Ram 2500 pickup truck display at a Chrysler dealership

Ram 2500 Tradesman, Big Horn, or Laramie—Which is right for you?

Let’s start by looking at the technical specifications of these three trims so that we can better compare them. Then we’ll proceed to talk about the strengths of each trim and compare them with the strengths of the others.

Ram 2500 Tradesman

Heavy Duty on display at a Stellantis Ram dealership

The Ram 2500 Tradesman is the entry-level trim that comes with halogen lights and 17-inch steel wheels. It also comes with standard vinyl seats, Bluetooth connectivity, and cruise control.

The Ram 2500 Tradesman can only be outfitted with the regular cab and the crew cab. It comes with 17-inch steel wheels.

Model years 2021 and 2022 have the same features and configurations.

Performance & Towing

The Ram 2500 Tradesman’s standard engine—a 6.4-Liter HEMI V8 Gasoline Engine—can produce 410 horsepower at 5,600 rpm and 429 lb-ft of torque at 4,000 rpm. Additionally, it also offers an optional 6.7-Liter Turbo Diesel engine. It is equipped with an 8-speed automatic transmission and a choice of RWD and 4WD drivetrains.

The towing capacity of the Ram 2500 Tradesman is 15,040 lbs when equipped with the regular cab on an RWD. This drops to 14,720 lbs, when the regular cab is equipped with the 4WD drivetrain.

Cab & Box Configurations

When configured with a 6-foot-4 box and a crew cab, the towing capacity becomes 14,690 lbs -and 14,380 lbs for the RWD and 4WD, respectively. On the other hand, when it is configured with an 8-foot box and a crew cab, towing capacity is 14,550 lbs -and 14,200 lbs for RWD and 4WD, respectively.

The Ram 2500 Tradesman’s curb weight depends on the cab and box installed. It has a fuel tank capacity of 32 gallons.

The turning diameter of a Ram 2500 Tradesman fitted with a regular cab and an 8-foot box is 45.4 feet. This increased to 47.9 feet when fitted with a crew cab and a 6-foot-4 box. The turning diameter is 53.5 feet when equipped with a crew cab and an 8-foot box.

Ram 2500 Big Horn

The Ram 2500 Big Horn comes equipped with 18-inch chrome wheels and a 31-gallon fuel tank.

Additionally, it can be configured with the tow-mode digital mirror and tow-mode camera. It has access to optional heated front seats, a heated steering wheel wrapped in leather, and steering-wheel-mounted audio controls.

Most of the features from 2021 are continued to 2022.

Performance & Towing

The Ram 2500 Big Horn is equipped with the same base engine as the Ram 2500 Tradesman with the same diesel engine option. It can be equipped with an RWD or a 4WD drivetrain on an 8-speed automatic transmission.

The maximum towing capacity of the 2021 Ram 2500 Big Horn is 14,970 lbs for a regular box that is equipped with an RWD drivetrain. This becomes 14,620 lbs when equipped with a 4WD.

The maximum towing capacity of a Ram 2500 Big Horn with a crew cab and a 6-foot-4 box is 14,580 lbs -and 14,420 lbs for RWD and 4WD, respectively. This is maxed at 14,450 lbs -and 14,110 lbs with the crew cab and an 8-foot box at RWD and 4WD drivetrains, respectively.

The towing capacity when equipped with the Mega Cab drops to 13,990 lbs.

Cab & Box Configurations

The Ram 2500 Big Horn can be outfitted with the same cab and box configurations as the Ram 2500 Tradesman. Additionally, it can also be installed with a Mega Cab that only comes with the 6-foot-4 box.

The total turning diameter of the Ram 2500 Big Horn is the same as the Ram 2500 Tradesman. It has a turning diameter of only 41.2 feet when installed with the Mega Cab.

Ram 2500 Laramie

The Ram 2500 Laramie comes with a standard multi-zone AC, climate control, heated front seats, and a heated steering wheel. Heated rear seats are offered as an option. Additionally, it has a standard woodgrain interior and a 10-point power passenger seat.

The Ram 2500 Laramie comes equipped with 18-inch aluminum wheels and a 31-gallon fuel tank.

The features of the 2021 Ram 2500 Laramie are also applicable to the 2022 Ram 2500 Laramie.

Performance & Towing

The Ram 2500 Laramie can be equipped with the same base engine as the first two trims.

Additionally, it can also be equipped with a 6.4-Liter V8 Heavy Duty HEMI MDS engine that is automatically matched with 8-speed automatic transmission.

It also has the option to install a 6.7-Liter I6 Cummins Turbo Diesel that is matched with a 6-speed automatic transmission. The necessary powertrain components for these two modifications are included with the price.

Its towing capacity is capped at 14,550 lbs and 14,220 lbs when equipped with the crew cab and the 6-foot-4 box on an RWD and 4WD drivetrain, respectively. The towing capacity is at 14,410 lbs -and 14,040 lbs when equipped with the crew cab and the 8-foot box at RWD and 4WD drivetrains, respectively.

The maximum towing capacity is only 13,940 lbs when equipped with the Mega Cab and the 6-foot-4 box.

Cab & Box Configurations

Moreover, unlike the first two trims, the Ram 2500 Laramie can only be equipped with a crew cab or a Mega Cab. However, the rear seats of its Mega Cab can be reclined from 22 to 37 degrees.

The turning diameter of the Ram 2500 Laramie, when equipped with different cabs and boxes, is the same as the first two trims.

Ram 2500 Heavy Duty parked on the street

What are the unique strengths of each trim over the others?

Now that we have a more detailed picture of the features of the three trims, let’s proceed to talk about the unique strengths of each trim over the others. This would allow us to match these strengths with specific functions that would benefit from them.

Ram 2500 Tradesman Strengths

The biggest strength of the Ram 2500 Tradesman is its ability to tow heavy loads. Its 15,040-lb towing capacity, when configured with an RWD and the regular cab, is the highest among all the different configurations of the three trims.

When matched with its MSRP of $37,750 for the 2022 model ($35,425 MSRP for the 2021 model when equipped with the cheapest configuration and before any optional add-ons), it has the highest towing capacity per dollar among the three.

This is ideal for commercial fleets that would benefit from the raw towing strength and the low cost of ownership compared to the other two. Farms that need to move heavy cargo regularly would also be a good match for the Ram 2500 Tradesman.

Ram 2500 Laramie Strengths

The Ram 2500 Laramie doesn’t have an option to be equipped with a regular cab. Thus, its ability to tow and carry heavy objects on its box or bed is affected by this.

The Ram 2500 Laramie is still a powerful HD truck. However, it is hard to justify spending $53,380 (this is the MSRP for the cheapest 2022 configuration before add-ons) for a commercial or farm truck (the 2021 model has an MSRP of $50,940 when equipped with the cheapest configuration before add-ons).

The strength of the Ram 2500 Laramie is its comfortable interior. It has all the creature comforts one could want when driving long distances—especially if those distances are across off-road terrain. Thus, the Ram 2500 Laramie is best for long-distance off-road travel with a camping trailer or boat trailer in tow.

Its features like climate control and heated seats, and heated steering wheel make it a comfortable way to travel long distances regardless of the season.

Ram 2500 Big Horn Strengths

The Ram 2500 Big Horn has the benefit of having access to a regular cab if you want to maximize its towing and carrying capacity. It may not have a configuration that can match the raw power of Ram 2500 Tradesman, but it is still no slouch at 14,950 lbs of maximum towing capacity.

It has a better interior than a Ram 2500 Tradesman but is not as comfortable as the Ram 2500 Laramie. This makes the Ram 2500 Big Horn the middle ground between these two trims. And this is its unique advantage.

The biggest strength of the Ram 2500 Big Horn is versatility, representing the best of both worlds. Thus, it can fit into the functions that require a combination of the strengths of the Ram 2500 Tradesman and the Ram 2500 Laramie.

It might be too expensive (at $41,870 MSRP for the 2022 model and $39,275 MSRP for the 2021 model) for some fleets, but it should be good enough as a farm vehicle that can double as a family car, too, with its access to crew and Mega Cab configurations.

It is great for functions that require considerable towing power with the ready comfort for driving long distances on a rough road.

Critical Problems of the Ram 2500

Pickup truck Dodge Ram 2500 in the city street.

No truck is perfect. And since we’re done talking about the good side of the Ram 2500, it’s time to talk about its bad side.

According to the NHTSA, the 2021 Ram 2500 already had three recalls for the 2021 Ram 2500 model. The affected components of the recall are airbags that fail to deploy and two electrical components with high fire risk.

Conclusion

Ram 2500 pickup truck display at a Chrysler dealership,Ram 2500 Tradesman Vs. Big Horn Vs. Laramie —Which Is Right For You?

The Ram 2500 has several trims that can fulfill different functions that require strength, versatility, and offroad comfort. Choosing the right Ram 2500 is a combination of function and preference.

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