I wish to share my experience and opinion about the RAM 1500 truck recently introduced to the Australian market by Ram Trucks Australia.
From what I understand left hand drive vehicles have usually been converted to right hand drive by various small workshops.
Now though, Ram Trucks Australia remanufacture the vehicles on a purpose built assembly line in Melbourne. The brand new American made Ram arrives in Australia as a left hand drive and leaves the Melbourne Factory as a perfect right hand drive vehicle. You can find out more about this by visiting the Ram Truck website.
I have always admired the Ram trucks but never thought of owning one (I was a little apprehensive about their size) But seeing them advertised and being readily available now through a large dealer network, curiosity got the better of me and I went for a test drive. Although a large vehicle their size does not make them hard to drive, actually I think their size makes them easier. The wide track and long wheelbase I suppose is what makes them very stable.
The first thing that I notice is that there is nothing to suggest that this vehicle has been modified in any way. The dashboard hasn’t been modified, a completely new dash has been made. The dash is covered in leather with very nice white stitching, with no squeaks or rattles. The windscreen wipers wipe to the full side as you would expect from a right hand drive vehicle.
I have owned 4WD utes and Wagons since the early 70’s. Landcruisers, Mitsubishi, Ford and they have all served me well. The Ram though is in a different class, it’s bigger, stronger, more powerful, more comfortable and can tow more.
Bigger; 5817 mm long, 2017 mm wide, 1939 mm long tub, kerb weight 2605 kg, GVM 3450 kg and Payload 845 kg.
Stronger; One look underneath the Ram and it becomes very obvious that this is a strong heavy duty vehicle. The compliance plate actually lists it as a truck.
Powerful; 5.7 Hemi V8.
Comfort; The Ram is very comfortable. After driving over 300 kilometers I feel far less fatigued and tired than I have done on the same trip in other vehicles. The cabin is spacious and quiet, the steering is effortless and the engine is made for country cruising. My wife who is no car enthusiast even commented on how comfortable and quiet the Ram is and how she doesn’t feel the bumps so much.
Towing capacity; 4500 kg.
One could assume these big trucks use a lot of fuel, well on that 300 kilometer trip I mentioned earlier the Ram returned 12 l/ 100 km, That was on an intermediate rural road.
The Ram is 4WD which would be particularly handy, especially on dirt roads when towing a trailer. Obviously on my test drive I didn’t tow anything but with this great powertrain I am sure it will make easy work of any task.
To my mind the Ram has the strength of a truck, the acceleration of a sports car and the comfort of a luxury car, one drive and I wanted one. There is a certain allure about the big American made trucks and in particular the legendary 5.7 Hemi V8. Rams come in three variations 1500, 2500 and 3500. The 1500 and 2500 share the same cabin but the 2500 is about 200mm longer weighs about 1000kg more and can tow more. The 3500, well I think it could tow a train. Go to the Ram Trucks for full details
One final thing and that is to acknowledge the great service offered to me by Danny and Adam at Thomas Bros Wagga. Thomas Bros is a highly regarded dealer in the area and their dedication to customer satisfaction is second to none. I would highly recommend you contact Thomas Bros if you are thinking about a new vehicle.