Flame Red Clearcoat 2012 Ram 1500 Big Horn 4WD 6-Speed Automatic HEMI 5.7L V8 Multi Displacement VVTRecent Arrival!Awards:* 2012 KBB.com 10 Best Used Trucks Under $20,000
For 2012, Dodge has given the 6-speed automatic transmission a new calibration, with Electronic Range Select, and there's a new steering wheel with integrated cruise-control buttons on most models. A new Mossy Oak Edition gives the Ram 1500 a camouflage look, while a new Tradesman HD model ups the Ram's trailer and payload ratings. <p><p>Six new exterior hues are offered for 2012: Black Clear Coat, Deep Cherry Red, Deep Molten Red, Sagebrush, Tequila Sunrise and True Blue Pearl. <p><p>Last year, Ram trucks no longer fit under the Dodge brand; rather, they're being sold and marketed under their own brand--Ram--to better distinguish them from the Dodge car and SUV lineups.
The 2012 Ram 1500 lineup is now offered in eleven different models, in Regular Cab, Quad Cab, or Crew Cab configurations, with two bed lengths, to fit a very wide range of uses from daily commuting and weekend towing to luxurious ranch use, or regular towing or hauling work. Powertrains also range from an affordable base V6 up to a strong Hemi V8 and an R/T model that takes full advantage of it for the street.
Regular Cab models of the Ram 1500 have no back seat, while Quad Cab models have a bench seat in back and can accommodate up to six if needed. Crew Cab models have four full-size doors, along with a full-size back seat good enough for long trips, but unlike the other models, they're only available in the shorter bed size. Throughout the lineup otherwise, you have a choice between 6'-4" and 5'-7" bed sizes.
The Ram 1500's powertrain lineup includes three engines. Base Ram 1500 models include a 215-horsepower, 3.7L V6 engine and a 4-speed automatic transmission, while a 310-horsepower, 4.7L flex-fuel V8 is a good compromise between strong and economical. At the top of the lineup is the 5.7L Hemi V8, making 390 horsepower and 407 pound-feet of torque and paired with a 6-speed automatic. Depending on the model, you can get either part-time or full-time 4-wheel drive, as well as a choice of four different axle ratios ranging from 3.21 to 4.10. Payload ratings run up to 3,100 pounds, with trailer ratings up to 11,500.
ST, Tradesman and Express models are the most affordable trucks in the lineup, with equipment geared either to those who need the Ram for commercial or work use or are simply on a tight budget. Base ST models come with a 40/20/40-split vinyl bench seat, a CD sound system with auxiliary input, and air conditioning, but it lacks the power accessories of upper trims. The Hemi V8 is available as a low-cost option on Tradesman models, and it's standard on the Express.
SLT and Outdoorsman and Sport models are the models that will fit most personal use shoppers who are value conscious. They get cloth seats, power windows and locks, remote keyless entry, an overhead console, upgraded sound and appearance upgrades throughout. Outdoorsman models come with features that fit the name, such as fender flares, bigger alloy wheels, off-road tires, quad-beam lamps, fog lamps, tow hooks and heavy-duty upgrades, but they also step up to a power driver's seat, leather trim, remote start, cruise control and a 115-volt AC outlet, among other extras. Sport models look the part in a different way, with a body-color grille, body-color front and rear treatments, an upgraded audio system with hard-drive music storage, a USB input and Bluetooth hands-free.
Premium features to be found on the models at the top of the lineup include heated and ventilated seats, heated sear seats, a navigation system, surround-sound audio and a DVD entertainment system for those in back. Those top trims also get soft-touch material the full width of the instrument panel, with contrast-stitching and their interiors are on par with luxury vehicles. Ride and roadholding is a bit better than in other full-size trucks, thanks to the multi-link front suspension and coil-spring rear setup. Across much of the lineup, the RamBox bins that are located alongside the bed lock and will hold work gear, or even beverages.
All Ram 1500 models get electronic stability control, front and rear side-curtain airbags, side seat airbags, and knee bolsters, while rear park assist and a rear back-up camera are available. A factory-option spray-in bedliner is available on all models.