As the new 2019 Ram 1500 scrambles up the pass towards the Continental Divide, clambering over boulders and fallen trees, and splashing through rain-filled ruts almost as though it were on a freshly paved roadway, we credit its new “mild” hybrid eTorque system. The technology somehow manages to simultaneously power the Ram’s new, semi-active suspension while boosting performance and improving fuel economy. But it’s not just traditional performance touchstones that will woo a whole new class of customer to this completely redesigned pickup.
Customers who usually invest in luxury sedans or coupes will enjoy the same level of plush interior choices in the latest Ram 1500 Limited. Like key competitors Chevrolet, Ford and GMC, the Fiat Chrysler truck brand offers a seemingly endless variety of cab, bed and powertrain configurations. But the options on the Limited explore new territory for the company. The power-operated leather seats are heated and vented. Wood trim cherries out the cabin. A 12-inch, portrait-oriented touchscreen displays a wealth of infotainment software. Outfitted for tech, it offers USB ports galore, a 19-speaker Harman Kardon audio system, even built-in WiFi. Ram also integrates such advanced drive assistance systems as radar-operated cruise control, forward–collision warning with emergency auto braking and lane departure warning. And for those struggling to squeeze into a tight spot, an auto-parking system. Once you check all the boxes, the price tag can easily approach $70,000.
Of course, if you check the right boxes you’ll also get the power to haul a bed full of rocks to decorate the vacation home, or tow a boat and trailer weighing more than 11,000 pounds—trucker stuff that also can prove useful to a suburban homeowner. And the workhorse-cum-luxury-ride formula seems to be working with Ford pushing the limits into the $100,000 realm, and GMC and Chevrolet right on its tailgate. The race is on. Look for automakers to pack on even more luxury features in the near future.