Breaking Down the 2023 Ram 1500's Towing Capacities

ram-1500-2023-exterior-oem-04 2023 Ram 1500 | Manufacturer image

The Ram 1500 full-size pickup truck offers powertrains, configurations and trim levels that range from work boots to Gucci loafers. The 2023 edition brings incremental changes to features, powertrains and available configurations, but the tow ratings continue to stretch from 6,120 pounds to 12,750 pounds to meet a wide range of needs. The current generation dates to 2019, when the 1500 was redesigned to up its game in capability and also in available luxury — so much so that the Ram 1500 won’s Luxury Car of the Year award for 2020.

Related: Pickup Trucks 101: Why Weight Capacities Are Important

The 2023 Ram 1500 — a separate truck from the previous generation that’s still sold as the 1500 Classic and isn’t included herein — continues to offer two cabs (extended cab and crew cab), two bed lengths (5-foot-7 and 6-foot-4), coil or air suspensions, and rear- or four-wheel drive. Powertrain choices for 2023 are shrinking from five to three, all with eight-speed automatic transmissions. The 5.7-liter V-8 engine now is offered only with the eTorque mildhybrid system, which is the more efficient version of the V-8; the non-eTorque version of the V-8 is dropped. The base engine continues to be the 3.6-liter V-6 with an eTorque system, and the high-performance TRX model retains the supercharged 6.2-liter V-8. And still available but in “get ‘em while supplies last” status is a fourth option: the turbo-diesel 3.0-liter V-6 that features better fuel efficiency with still-solid towing capability.

“We continue to move forward on our journey toward an electrified future, and … we made the decision to conclude 3.0-liter EcoDiesel engine production in January of 2023,” said spokesman Trevor Dorches. Ram also announced in February that a battery-electric 1500 will roll out in 2024, likely as a 2025 model.

The Ram 1500’s maximum tow ratings listed below are calculated under the SAE International J2807 standard for determining trailer weight ratings and vehicle gross combined weight ratings. Note that the advertised maximum for any pickup assumes the most favorable conditions; max towing capacities in the real world will be reduced by added passenger and cargo load, and possibly by additional optional and aftermarket equipment. More details are here on how to calculate the maximum for your specific truck.

With those variables in mind, here’s a quick guide to the 2023 Ram 1500’s towing maximums based on engine and cab configurations. Note that Ram recommends a weight-distributing hitch to tow anything over 5,000 pounds, so essentially for towing the maximum with any configuration of the 1500.

What’s the 2023 Ram 1500’s Maximum Towing Capacity?

The top-end towing capacity for the 2023 Ram 1500 is 12,750 pounds. That rating is for the base Tradesman trim level’s Quad Cab (Ram’s name for its four-door extended cab) with the 6-foot-4-inch bed, RWD, the 5.7-liter Hemi V-8 with eTorque and optional Max Tow Package. The rating also applies to the same cab, bed and engine configuration in the Big Horn/Lone Star trim (name dependent on your region, but it’s the same truck). The price of this configuration in the Tradesman starts at $43,595 (all prices include an $1,895 destination charge) and $48,710 for the Big Horn/Lone Star.

The Max Tow Package is available only on RWD Quad Cab trucks with the V-8 or diesel in the Tradesman and Big Horn/Lone Star trims. It includes a 9.75-inch rear axle with the numerically highest 3.92 ratio, a Class IV receiver hitch, 18-by-8-inch wheels, a full-size spare tire and LT275/65R18C tires. Available for all models except the Tradesman HFE is a Trailer-Tow Group that adds trailer tow mirrors and a trailer brake controller, along with other features.

What’s the 2023 Ram 1500’s Minimum Towing Capacity?

The lowest tow rating for the 2023 Ram 1500 is 6,120 pounds. It applies to Tradesman trucks with the larger crew cab and 6-foot-4 bed, as well as the 3.6-liter V-6, 4WD and the numerically lowest 3.21 axle ratio.

Max Towing Capacity by Engine

Ram currently offers four engines for 2023 with one of two eight-speed automatics, depending on the engine, and rear or four-wheel drive.

3.6-Liter V-6 With eTorque (305 Horsepower, 271 Pounds-Feet of Torque)

The V-6’s highest tow rating is 7,690 pounds for the RWD Quad Cab with the 6-foot-4-inch bed and 3.55 axle ratio. Starting price for the Tradesman trim level is $39,305, including a Class IV hitch receiver. The Tradesman crew cab with the 5-foot-7-inch bed, RWD and 3.55 axle ratio is rated at 7,550 pounds.

5.7-Liter Hemi V-8 With eTorque (395 HP, 410 Pounds-Feet)

The 5.7-liter Hemi eTorque mild hybrid’s maximum rating is 12,750 pounds in the RWD Quad Cab with the 6-foot-4-inch bed and the Max Tow Package; it starts at $43,595 for the Tradesman trim level. Following that up are the RWD crew cab with 6-foot-4 bed and 3.92 axle at 11,540 pounds, and the RWD crew cab with 5-foot-7 bed and 3.92 axle at 11,520 pounds. Pricing for either starts at about $45,000 for the Tradesman trim level.

3.0-Liter EcoDiesel V-6 (260 HP, 480 Pounds-Feet)

The outgoing turbocharged 3.0-liter EcoDiesel is rated for a maximum 12,560 pounds in the Tradesman Quad Cab RWD with a 6-foot-4-inch bed and the Max Tow Package. The rating drops to 10,010 pounds in the same trim configuration without the Max Tow Package but with the optional 3.92 axle ratio.

TRX 6.2-liter Hemi V-8 (702 HP, 650 Pounds-Feet)

Ram’s supercharged Hemi V-8 powers the top-end TRX that’s available only as a 4WD crew cab with a 5-foot-7 box. Offered only with the 3.55 axle ratio, this single configuration is rated to tow up to 8,100 pounds. Ram touts the $86,450 TRX as the “fastest and most powerful mass-produced half-ton pickup truck in the world.”

Max Towing Capacities by Cab

Quad Cab

The Quad Cab, which is only offered with the 6-foot-4 long bed, has up to 12,750 pounds maximum towing capacity — the top rating for any Ram 1500. That capacity is for the Tradesman Quad Cab with the 5.7-liter Hemi V-8, RWD and the Max Tow Package. It starts at $43,595.

Crew Cab With 6-Foot-4-Inch Bed

Crew-cab models with the long bed have a maximum towing capacity of up to 11,540 pounds in the Tradesman trim level with the 5.7-liter Hemi, RWD and the 3.92 axle ratio. This version with a Class IV hitch starts at $45,840.

Crew Cab With 5-Foot-7-Inch Bed

Crew-cab models with the short bed have a maximum towing capacity of 11,520 pounds in the Tradesman trim level with the 5.7-liter Hemi, RWD and the 3.92 axle ratio. This version with a Class IV hitch starts at about $45,540.

Four-Wheel Drive

The max towing rating for a four-wheel-drive Ram 1500 is 11,340 pounds for a Tradesman Quad Cab with the long bed, the 5.7-liter Hemi V-8 and the 3.92 axle ratio. This version with a Class IV hitch starts near $46,640. Next highest is 11,310 pounds for a Tradesman crew cab with the same powertrain and the long bed, starting at about $50,000. Third is the comparable Tradesman crew cab with the short bed rated to tow 11,270 pounds; it starts at $49,340.

What About the Rebel’s Towing Capacity?

The off-road-focused Ram 1500 Rebel model nonetheless offers capable tow ratings. The 2023 Rebel currently is offered only as a crew cab with the 5-foot-7 bed, but it has V-6, diesel and V-8 versions with RWD or 4WD and a 3.92 axle ratio. Maximum towing with the V-8 and RWD is 11,310 pounds; it’s 11,210 with 4WD. The tow rating with the V-6 and RWD is 7,410 pounds; with 4WD, it’s 7,190. With the diesel V-6, the tow ratings are 9,770 pounds with RWD and 9,600 with 4WD. The top Rebel towing versions have a starting price of $58,725 with RWD and $62,525 with 4WD.

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