When looking at the full-size pickup selection of the last 10 years you will notice that Dodge has been ahead of the curve for style, power and durability. With the addition of the Lifetime Powertrain warranty, within the last 2 years, sales have increased and customers will have the peace of mind knowing that their truck is covered as long as they own it (or the manufacturer stays in business :P).
Trucks were originally designed to work, spending the bulk of their time hauling loads, pulling stumps out of the ground and general farm duties. Over the past 60 years these vehicles have evolved to the bulky, do everything, forms of transportation we see today. You can comfortably drive one to work everyday with the conveniences we have grown accustom to, get decent mileage, and pull a house off it's foundation.
The 2009 Dodge Ram 1500 was a huge success. The new design was leaps and bounds ahead of the outgoing model, not just looks but overall driveability was enhanced. The previous model 1500 was full of plastic, it seemed like acres upon acres of plastic sitting right in front of you on the dashboard. The suspension did well but there is always room for improvement. Styling was getting a little old, not changing much since the originally released 2002 model.
Improve they did! After extensive market research Dodge found that the majority of half-ton truck buyers weren't hauling half tons, maybe a 2"x4" here and there but not heavy duty hauling 90% of the time. Most were driving these trucks for the reasons I listed above, comfort, decent mileage and IF needed hauling. Dodge addressed the issue of suspension stiffness by switching out the leaf spring for a coil-spring. This small switch in design delivered car like ride and the same capabilities of a truck. Why sacrifice your daily driving comfort for the 10% or less heavy duty hauling?
Not only the suspension received treatment... If you compared the interior side-by-side of a 2008 and a 2009 you wouldn't believe they were from the same manufacturer at all. YES its that good! Exterior design commands your attention, its smooth but boxy at the same time and you know what? It works! Plus the aerodynamics have been improved!
I had the opportunity to drive a 2009 Laramie 1500 Hemi 4x4 from our dealership (Ron Tonkin Dodge in Gladstone, OR) to another Dodge Dealership in Eureka, CA on a dealer-trade. Google maps says its 411 miles, 7 hours and 49 minutes. With the amount of road construction I encountered it took A LOT longer than the time given, miles obviously stayed the same. Even with the idling while stopped and merging onto the freeway after stops and listening to that SWEET factory dual exhaust I average 21 miles per gallon. 21 Miles Per Gallon is respectable on a flat road at constant speeds but over passes and winding two lane roads constantly on the gas is down right INSANE!
I have not had the opportunity to drive a 2010 Ram 2500 or 3500 but I know they will have improved an already awesome truck. Arguably they have the best drivetrain(s) in their class (Cummins and Hemi), probably the best interior and the best warranty hands down! They have added a type of "shock absorber" under the cab to reduce the harshness of the ride.
Bigger brakes and an exhaust brake add to the piece of mind with a heavy loads traveling downhill. Heavy might be an understatement, with the correct options you can tow up to 18,500 lbs thanks to the available BLUETECH 6.7L Cummins 6 cylinder engine. This newer diesel engine produces 650 ft/lbs of foundation crushing torque at a MORE than usable 1500 RPMS, that low-RPM power should be credited to the variable geometry Holset turbo.
Even the standard HEMI 5.7L is powerful enough to do the work required by 80% of the truck owners out there. 383 horsepower and 400 ft/lbs of torque should do the trick, as long as the trick is not a 34' 5th-Wheel...
Judging by the pictures and video available on the Dodge website I know this truck will be a hit with the "back-bone" of America. The men and women of this country that really work for a living. I know that the economy is tough right now, but if you have made it this last year you can make it through anything (literally). We have nowhere to go but up!... Oh Dodge also reduced the pricing on the 2010 models compared to 2009 models.