by David Zatz • Posted on February 28th, 2013
A recent Ram product update told dealers that the optional 3.73 and 4.10 axle ratios are no longer available for Ram 2500 and 3500 diesel pickups, except when equipped with “duallies.” The update pointed out that “the 2013 Ram diesel equipped with a 3.42 [axle ratio] will tow more than a comparable 2012 with a 3.73 or 4.10 — while offering better acceleration and improved fuel economy.”
Sources confirmed that the dealer ordering system shows the 3.73 as standard, but then automatically options the 3.42 and does not give any options to change it. The 4.10 ratio shows up but cannot be selected on 2500 and 3500 diesels.
For 2013, Ram launched a high-output version of its 6.7 liter Cummins straight-six diesel engine, pushing 385 horsepower and 850 lb-ft of torque through an Aisin six-speed automatic; this version is only sold with the Ram 3500. The standard diesel for Ram 2500 and 3500 pickups is the same basic engine, rated at 350 hp/660 lb-ft with a manual transmission or 370 hp and 800 lb-ft with the six-speed Chrysler automatic.
Power increased across the board, but in different ways. The diesel with automatic went up from 350 hp @ 3,013 rpm to 370 hp @ 2,800 rpm. Manual transmission buyers now see peak torque at 2,800 rpm instead of 3,013, and gained 50 lb-ft of torque, peaking at 1,500 rpm (rather than 1,400).
Trailer towing stands at a maximum 18,350 lb (RWD; 4×4 is 17,880) with the regular cab Ram 2500 pickups.
An additional change was the restoration of single rear wheels as standard equipment on all Ram 3500 pickups; the dual rear wheel package is optional on regular cab, crew cab/long box, and Mega Cab. This is similar to GM/Chevrolet and Ford pickup options.
In today’s print edition of Automotive News, Larry Vellequette wrote about one more facet of the ongoing battle for bragging rights among pickup manufacturers.
This time, Ram is engaged in a tussle with Ford over top towing rights. Ford claims the championship over the Ram 3500, saying its 4X4 crew cab heavy-duty pickup can tow 31,200 pounds, 1,200 more than the Ram 3500 regular cab 4X2, which Chrysler maintains has “best-in-class” towing....
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