It's got an 8-speed transmission, where the other two have 10 speeds. But this transmission's always felt like it just had the right number of gears and the right sort of shift intelligence to use them wisely. And that seems to be the case here as well. I got no complaints at all. The truck we're in has coil spring suspension.
There's an optional air suspension that used to be standard in the Rebel, but they've decided to go the other way. Coil spring suspension is standard, air is optional. And I actually like it that way because coil spring suspension is great off road, but it also delivers a smooth ride on road. The standard axle ratio in this truck is a 3. And that will deliver the best fuel economy.
We don't know what the rated fuel economy is. All they've said so far is that with the optional gallon tank, it should have enough fuel on board to go from Duluth to Dallas, which is miles, which would be 33 miles per gallon on the highway. Now, nothing's confirmed, but that's the boast that they made.
Now, the optional axle ratio is a And you'll want that if you want to higher tow rating. But the highest tow rating requires a max tow package, which is more than just the axle ratio. It's also a heavier axle overall, stiffer rear springs, a bigger rear stabilizer bar, and other small tweaks. And that will get you the advertised maximum tow rating of 12, pounds. But that's OK, because if you go to a Ford and look for a diesel there, you can't get the diesel with their lower trims. And the same is true of the Chevrolet, you can't get it in their Trail Boss, which is like the Rebel.
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And the low price custom, they won't sell it there, either. So Ram has a couple of advantages. You can get the EcoDiesel across the range.
How much does it cost? And that's a bargain compared to the lowest-price Ford F with a diesel, which is well into the 40s, because they don't offer this engine with their work truck. Chevy doesn't offer their diesel in a work truck either, but we don't know what that means in terms of base price because they haven't released pricing details yet. Not only is the ride smooth, it's quiet in here. I mean, you can tell you're driving a diesel, but not really until you lay into it. They've done a lot of things to make this version of the EcoDiesel quieter than before, and it's really paid off.
Ram introduced a multifunction tailgate, which is interesting. It's split , and it opens like barn doors. Or if you want to open both sides, you can lean further into the bed to get to big, heavy items that are up near the cab. It's an interesting solution. I'm not convinced yet, just because I haven't actually used it in the real world. I've only demoed it.
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But it is interesting when you think of the multifunction tailgate that GMC just offered. It seems like we've got a new tailgate war starting up. The Rebel is an interesting trim level. Because it's not just an offroad package. I mean, it doesn't beat you up at all. It sits up an inch higher, and you have a locking diff and Bilstein shock absorbers.
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Those things are all great-- knobby tires too, and kind of a front end with a better approach angle. All of that is great, but it's also a truck you can drive every day. The ride is really nice. The tires make a little more noise than the other tires on the other versions of this truck, but it's not way out of the ballpark at all. It's got some kind of, like, presence.
I don't know, it's cool. Now that we've driven the Ram EcoDiesel, we can confirm that the extra power and torque is something you can feel in regular driving, every day. And the 8-speed automatic transmission is just as smart as ever. As for that monster tow rating, it certainly is an impressive number, but you can only get it in a couple of specific trim levels. Overall, it would be hard for me to choose this truck in any other powertrain.
Click Subscribe for more videos like this, and visit Edmunds next time you're ready to buy a car or truck. The story of the Ram pickup centers around the Ram EcoDiesel.
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That's because the truck itself isn't any different except for the return of the 3. But this isn't the same EcoDiesel engine. Yes, it's still a turbocharged 3. It now makes more power and class-leading levels of torque, it offers higher towing capacity, and it sips less diesel fuel.
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Ram also makes it easy to get one because the EcoDiesel option is available in every trim level -- including, for the first time, the Rebel off-road trim level we're driving today. Ford offers an array of powertrains for its F, including several strong turbocharged engines and a diesel of its own.
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Towing and fuel efficiency are both strong points. Ram has nearly equal ratings on those fronts and better ride quality, passenger comfort and interior storage. For most buyers, a choice between the two comes down to personal preference. Read Edmunds' long-term road test of the Ford F Chevrolet excels in sheer size and no-nonsense truck features. The Silverado has the widest pickup bed in the class, paired with the largest number of fixed and adjustable tie-downs.
The steering and braking feel are excellent. Everywhere else, though, it is a step behind its rivals.
Interior quality is lacking, and desirable features such as navigation and safety aids are only available on top trims. Toyota's full-size truck offering is aging gracefully, but it's still aging. Its standard V8 engine is powerful but thirsty, and the plasticky interior harkens back to another time.
But the Tundra is still in demand, and residual values are among the highest of any vehicle. It also comes with more standard driver safety aids than the Ram.