The redesigned 2009 Dodge Ram 1500 emphasizes aerodynamic styling with a unique "grille-forward" design, ride comfort with a coil-spring rear suspension and storage innovation with the RamBox. Dodge also addressed the basics with more power in the Hemi engine and a radically improved interior.
Dodge replaced the too-big MegaCab 1500 with a more conventional crew cab. Returning are the regular cab and quad cab. The new platform is based on two wheelbase lengths (120 and 140 inches), so there are three cargo-bed lengths (5 feet, 7 inches; 6 feet, 4 inches and 8 feet) to match with the appropriate cab. Dodge's familiar trims also return: ST, SLT, TRX4, Sport and Laramie.
Dodge says there are more than 35 features on the 2009 Ram 1500 that are new or significantly improved over the previous generation, but the two generating the most interest are RamBox and the coil-spring rear suspension. RamBox is available only on the crew cab. It features integrated, lockable storage boxes on each side of the bed. These boxes basically take up the awkward space around the wheel wells, leaving a clean, rectangular cargo bed. The crew cab also features in-floor storage near the second-row seats.
The multilink, coil-spring suspension is based on proven designs used by Jeep and Dodge in its SUVs. The Dodge design provides an uncompromised ride, especially when the cargo bed is empty.
- Dual chrome-tipped exhaust integrated into rear bumper
- Adjustable cargo-rail tie-down system available
- Ram's head tailgate badge is much larger
The Ram 1500's interior will still appeal to traditional owners, but Dodge now offers more amenities, including premium seating with soft-touch materials and a console-mounted shifter, that will entice cosmopolitan owners, too. The seats' stylish full-width contrasting stitching comes on the Sport and Laramie trims. Overall, the interior is a noticeable and welcome improvement over the capable but uninspired passenger cabs of the past.
Interior features include:
- Rear seat heating available on crew cab
- Available power-adjustable pedals
- Available rearview camera
- Available power-sliding rear window on quad cab
Under the hood
- 215-horsepower, 3.7-liter V-6, iron block/aluminum cylinder heads, single overhead camshaft, two valves per cylinder with 235 pounds-feet peak torque
- 310-hp, 4.7-liter V-8, iron block/aluminum cylinder heads, single overhead camshaft, two valves per cylinder with 330 pounds-feet peak torque
- 380-hp, 5.7-liter Hemi V-8, iron block/aluminum cylinder heads, cam-in-block, two valves per cylinder with 404 pounds-feet peak torque
- Six-speed manual (standard on 3.7-liter)
- Four-speed automatic (available on 3.7-liter)
- Five-speed automatic (standard on 4.7-liter, 5.7-liter)
The Ram 1500 has a number of advanced safety features, such as antilock brakes and Electronic Stability Program, which reduces engine power if the system's sensors detect a variance in the driver's steering and the vehicle's path. The Ram 1500 also offers trailer-sway control. Dodge also added side curtain airbags on quad and crew cabs.
Other safety features include:
- Hill Start Assist keeps truck from rolling backward on steep hill
- Brake Assist applies maximum braking power in panic situations
Of interest to truck owners
- Gross vehicle weight rating: 6,025-6,600 pounds* (4x2), 6,350-6,600 pounds* (4x4)
- Payload: 1,290-1,850 pounds* (4x2), 1,380-1,470 pounds* (4x4)
- 4x2 maximum towing capacity: 3,100-3,800 pounds* (3.7-liter V-6), 5,350-7,600 pounds* (4.7-liter), 5,900-9,100 pounds*
- 4x4 maximum towing capacity: 5,100-7,400 pounds* (4.7-liter V-8), 6.600-8,900 pounds* (5.7-liter V-8)
- GVW: 6,700 pounds (4x2), 6,800 pounds (4x4)
- Payload: 1,630-1,790 pounds* (4x2), 1,390-1,430 pounds* (4x4)
- 4x2 maximum towing capacity: 2,950-3,450 pounds* (3.7-liter V-6), 5,200-7,350 pounds* (4.7-liter V-8), 6,650-8,800 pounds* (5.7-liter V-8)
- 4x4 maximum towing capacity: 5,850-7,100 pounds* (4.7-liter V-8), 6,400-8,550 pounds* (5.7-liter V-8)
- GVW: 6,800 pounds (4x2 and 4x4)
- Payload: 1,640-1,650 pounds* (4x2), 1,360-1,410 pounds* (4x4)
- 4x2 maximum towing capacity: 5,100-7,200 pounds* (4.7-liter V-8), 6,600-8,700 pounds* (5.7-liter V-8)
- 4x4 maximum towing capacity: 5,750-6,950 pounds* (4.7-liter V-8), 6,300-8,400 pounds* (5.7-liter V-8)
- Fuel tank capacity: 26 gallons (SWB), 32 gallons (LWB)
- Axle ratio: 3.21:1, 3.55:1, 3.92:1, 4.10:1 (Sport R/T only)
- Transfer-case ratio low range: 2.72:1
- Crawl ratio: 33.45:1 (5A with 4.10:1 axle), 31.99:1 (5A with 3.92:1 axle)
- Minimum ground clearance: 7.7 inches
- Approach angle: 19.2 degrees (quad cab 4x4, crew cab 4x4)
- Departure angle: 24.3 degrees (quad cab 4x4, crew cab 4x4)
- Ramp breakover: 15.2 degrees (quad cab 4x4, crew cab 4x4)
- Cargo-bed load height: 32.1-33 inches (depending on model)
- Cargo floor length: 67.4 inches (crew cab), 76.3 inches (quad cab, regular cab short bed), 96.3 inches (regular cab long bed)
- Cargo floor width: 66.4 inches
- Cargo floor width at wheel well: 51 inches
- Cargo bed depth: 20.0 inches (short bed), 20.1 inches (standard bed), 20.2 inches (long bed)
*GVWR, payload and towing depend on engine choice, axle ratio, wheel size and bed length.
Note: All towing capacities are with properly equipped vehicle and 150-pound driver.