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TheCarConnection.com's editors read the latest reviews on the new 2008 Dodge Ram 2500 and Ram 3500 heavy-duty pickups to write this comprehensive review. Experts from TheCarConnection.com also drove various version of the Dodge Ram 2500 and 3500. These experiences enable this team to offer you a definitive opinion on this heavy-duty full-size pickup. This review also compares the 2008 Dodge Ram HD with other vehicles in its class to give you the best advice even when other reviews present conflicting opinions.
The 2008 Dodge Ram 2500 is a fairly civilized workhorse, comfortable and composed. Granted, like a draft horse (a real one, like on a farm), to be truly happy they need to be working--pulling or carrying something heavy. But keep them in their element, and they'll be good to you.
The bodies of the 2008 Dodge Ram 2500 and Ram 3500 are identical to the half-ton 2008 Ram, and they're offered in the same configurations, including the spacious Mega Cab. The beds are even shared, with the exception of the extra-wide fenders on the duallie. Not fooling with the basic Ram package is smart thinking on Dodge's part. The Ram cabs are among the most accommodating in the business, with a clean design and enough compartments to store a whole gross of cubbies.
The chassis under the Ram 2500 and 3500 is basically the same as on the 1500. In fact, the two-wheel-drive heavy-duty Rams are the first trucks of their capacity to get rack-and-pinion steering similar to the rack-and-pinion used by lesser-capacity Rams. That steering pays off in excellent road feel and responsiveness (at least for a truck this large). Dodge, however, keeps traditionalists happy with the 4x4 Ram Heavies, which still use a recirculating-ball steering system and retain the solid front axle serious off-roaders consider an indispensable element of any real truck (the Ram 1500 4x4 switched to an independent front suspension last year). In fact, the coil-sprung 4x4 front suspension is virtually indistinguishable from that of the outgoing Ram heavy-duty 4x4.
Americans have been buying more and more high-capacity pickups over the last decade, and the category has grown increasingly competitive. Like the Ford and GM entries in the class, the Ram can be had with virtually every comfort and convenience item offered on half-ton pickups.
Power is of the utmost importance for the buyers considering the 2008 Dodge Ram 2500 and Ram 3500 heavy-duty models. The 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 is standard, and produces 345 horsepower at 375 pound-feet of torque. The HEMI is matched to a heavy-duty five-speed automatic. For those who want the ultimate in power and durability, Dodge introduces a new 6.7-liter Cummins turbodiesel engine. This six-cylinder uses advanced combustion technology plus patented Bluetec exhaust after-treatment to meet 2010 emissions standards, today. It's the first heavy-duty truck to do so, and in the process nearly matches the power output of the V-8 diesel engines offered by Ford and General Motors. The diesel comes with a standard six-speed manual or optional six-speed automatic transmission.
- HEMI power
- Cummins diesel power
- Diesel meets 2010 emissions standards
- Ram styling
- Choice of models
Next: Interior / Exterior »
- Quad Cab rear-seat legroom
- Shift quality of automatic with Cummins