We may get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.
If you head over to the Ram trucks website, you will notice that there are 5 different types of trucks on sale today. That’s a lot of vehicles for someone who isn’t already familiar with all of these different kinds of pickups. To assist you in your search for the right Ram truck for you, we have dissected all of these offerings and parsed out all of the most important information about each one.
After reading through this article, you will know which Ram truck fits your needs. From pricing and trim levels to towing and payload (how much the truck can carry), we have found all of the info you need as you compare Ram pickup models.
To start things off, here are the 5 types of Ram pickups on sale today:
- Ram 1500 – the new, fifth-generation half-ton offering from Ram features some of the most impressive tech and capability on the market today.
- Ram 1500 Classic – the fourth-generation half-ton truck gives buyers the choice to opt for less luxury and capability in exchange for a lower price of entry.
- Ram 2500 – new for 2019, the Ram 2500 features two engine choices as well as a nearly 20,000-lb maximum tow rating. This is also the only Ram pickup to be made in the venerable Power Wagon trim.
- Ram 3500 – With 1,000 lb-ft of torque on tap, the Ram 3500 can tow over 35,000 lbs. That’s just … insane. What else can you say?
- Ram Chassis Cab – for commercial enterprises, Ram offers the chassis cab trucks, which can be configured any way you desire. You just have to do the work yourself or pay someone to do it for you.
Are you looking for a family truck that offers a well-rounded set of capabilities or a mega-tough dually that can haul the biggest 5th wheels on the market? All of these trucks are built for different uses, so let’s dig in to find out which one can work best for you.
The 5 Types of Ram Pickups
Let’s explore each type of Ram truck in more detail.
2019 Ram 1500
Right now, Ram sells two different 1500 (commonly referred to as half-ton pickups) models: the old, last-generation model and this new-for-2019 Ram 1500. As the half-ton offering, this is the do-it-all truck. From family road trips to towing the boat to the lake, these trucks can just about do it all. What they are lacking is the serious towing and hauling capability reserved for the heavy-duty (2500 and above) trucks on this list.
Being the newer 5th-generation model, this 2019 Ram 1500 offers more of, well, pretty much everything than its predecessor. For starters, there is Ram’s new design language that allows the new model to stand out from the old trucks. The modernized, softer look they have given the Ram 15oo might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but you can’t deny that this is a fresh-looking pickup:
But it’s not all about looks; the new 1500 also offers higher towing (12,750 lbs) and payload (2,300 lbs) figures than any previous half-ton Ram pickup. A new multifunction tailgate offers never before seen flexibility when it comes to loading and unloading.
Inside, you will find the most technologically advanced and comfortable interior of just about any truck on the market. The first thing you will notice is the optional 12-inch touchscreen display that uses the new Uconnect software to control your infotainment system. The gauge cluster is a new digital design, and the new Ram 1500 uses active noise cancellation to achieve the quietest interior in its class.
The all-new Ram 1500 is currently offered in 6 different trims. That might seem like a lot, but this is one area where Ram falls behind some rivals, most notably Ford, who offers more configurations on its F150. Here are all of those Ram 1500 trims, listed in order of their starting prices as listed on the Ram website.
Laramie Longhorn ($54,490)
Ram 1500 Classic
If those prices seem a little steep, Ram still might have something to fit your budget. We are talking about the fourth-generation Ram 1500, now referred to as the Ram 1500 Classic. First introduced for the 2009 model year, this platform has been around for a long time. And that’s exactly what allows Ram to sell this model for less.
Along with the lower price come some tradeoffs, of course. For one, you will miss out on some of the hot new tech featured on the updated 5th-generation trucks. That includes the new eTorque hybrid Hemi engine, the Uconnect infotainment system, one year of free SiriusXM radio, and multiple USB outlets.
The old trucks aren’t quite as strong as the new as well. For example, their maximum towing is rated at just 10,710 lbs – that’s roughly 1,000 lbs less than the new models can pull. Payload also takes a hit when trading down to the older generation, with a maximum of 1,920 lbs.
Many reviewers have also noted that the old trucks are noticeably less refined when it comes to comfort and driving. So, clearly, there is a lot to consider when it comes to finding the right Ram 1500. Right now, Ram offers the 1500 Classic in the following trims and starting prices:
Moving on to the next truck, we don’t have any more of the old/new generations to consider. There is only one quarter-ton Ram, and that’s the new-for-2019 Ram 2500. Compared to both 1500 models, the 2500 is bigger, heavier, and stronger. A stronger frame and more powerful engines give this model more capability than any half-ton could muster.
And the truck’s maximum towing and payload figures show just what I am talking about. Ram states those figures are 19,780 lbs for towing and 4,050 lbs for payload. While still significantly lower than what the Ram 3500 can achieve, there is no doubt that the Ram 2500 can handle everything but the biggest loads.
But just because this is a super-capable work truck doesn’t mean it can’t coddle its occupants. In fact, most reviewers rate the new generation of 2019 Ram trucks as the most luxurious, comfortable trucks on the market today.
Just glancing at some of the features offered on the 2500 shows that Ram was serious about comfort when designing this truck. There is an available auto-level rear air suspension, acres of leather and wood, a handy kick-out bed step, and a reclining rear seat. Up front, a 12-inch touchscreen makes for the largest screen on any heavy-duty truck on the market today. That screen powers a class-leading (optional) 17-speaker surround-sound system by Harman Kardon.
Here are all trims and starting prices for the Ram 2500. As you will notice, prices can vary widely. Opting for the Cummins diesel engine and higher trim levels can really drive the price up, but it is nice to have so many choices in the quarter-ton segment. Also of note is the fact that the off-road-oriented Power Wagon is only available on the 2500 trim level.
Big Horn ($42,450)
Power Wagon ($53,350)
Laramie Longhorn ($56,950)
Before the 2019 Ram trucks, the world had never seen a pickup with 1,000 lb-ft of torque straight from the factory. Ram was able to achieve this feat with its 6.7-liter high-output Cummins diesel engine. That’s some serious power – enough to give the Ram 3500 a maximum of 35,100 pounds of towing capability.
Configured with the dual rear wheels, the Ram 3500 also offers incredible payload capacity: 7,680 lbs. That’s enough to carry two Honda CRVs in the bed with over 1,000 lbs of payload left over. That’s some serious weight we are talking about. Ram 3500 owners don’t have to worry about loading up their Lance 1172 campers – they’ve got plenty of capability.
As with the Ram 2500, this one-ton truck offers an auto-level rear air suspension to keep the load level. Inside, the trimmings are every bit as luxurious as well. The center console is cavernous enough to store 15-inch laptops, while a wireless charging station keeps your gadgets powered up without all of those messy cords. Active noise cancellation, a 17-speaker Harman Kardon sound system, and a class-exclusive reclining rear seat are all available as well.
Here is a breakdown of the various trim levels offered on the Ram 3500:
Big Horn ($44,000)
Laramie Longhorn ($58,300)
Ram Chassis Cab
Lastly, we will discuss the rarest of Rams: the Chassis Cab. As you will notice, this truck is missing one key element: the bed.
That’s because these trucks are optimized for customization. Ram places the can on top of the frame, then ships these trucks off for other companies to make them into whatever they need. That might include a flatbed for farming or construction purposes, a crane for utility work, or even an ambulance.
Because they are designed for commercial purposes, these trucks offer fewer luxury amenities, but plenty of capability. The 5500 Chassis Cab is able to tow up to 35,220 pounds. Okay, so that’s barely more than an optioned-out Ram 3500, but it’s a lot of weight nonetheless. To help with towing, the Chassic Cab can display your trailer’s tire pressure so that you can keep an eye on everything back there. No other heavy-duty chassis cab truck can offer this technology.
Because these are almost exclusively used as commercial vehicles, Ram Chassis Cab trucks don’t offer as many trim levels.
3500 10K Chassis Cab ($35,000)
3500 Chassis Cab ($35,000)
4500 Chassis Cab ($38,795)
5500 Chassis Cab ($39,895)
With so many brand-new models on sale, there has truly never been a better time to buy a Ram truck. But make sure not to bite off more than you are prepared to chew, so to speak. Sure, the 35o0 is the biggest, meanest truck on the block, but that doesn’t make it fun to drive to the grocery store or anywhere with tight parking. Also, even though these trucks are more fuel-efficient than ever, the fuel bill might still surprise you. So, do your homework, drive a few, and find your “goldilocks” Ram truck. Good luck!