New and Stronger, 2019 Ram Chassis Cabs Go Upscale


Debuting at the 2019 Chicago Auto Show, the medium-duty 2019 Ram 3500, 4500 and 5500 chassis cabs boast new frames and chassis upgrades like those found on the news and heavy-duty pickup trucks revealed at the 2019 Detroit auto show. Maximum tow ratings for the commercial- and upfitter-oriented Class 3, 4 and 5 trucks will reach as high as 35,220 pounds, have a gross vehicle weight rating of 43,000 pounds and deliver a max payload of 12,510 pounds — all higher than ever before.

Related: More 2019 Chicago Auto Show Coverage

The 2019 chassis-cab models will also get the 6.4-liter Hemi V-8 paired to the all-new heavy-duty eight-speed automatic transmission (for 3500 only) or the Aisin AS66RC six-speed (an option for the 3500, standard for the 4500 and 5500). The Hemi is factory rated at 370 horsepower with 429 pounds-feet of torque when mated to the six-speed, and 410 hp with 429 pounds-feet of torque when paired with the eight-speed.

On the diesel side, the all-new turbo-diesel 6.7-liter Cummins inline-six-cylinder delivers all the same upgrades (stronger and lighter block, smarter fuel injection, new exhaust valves and springs, aluminum oil and water pump housings, a bigger turbo and more) and is mated to the same six-speed transmission available with the Hemi engine, which offers right- or left-side power take-off availability. The improved Cummins is rated at 360 hp at 2,800 rpm and 800 pounds-feet at 1,800 rpm.

The redesigned front end and hood of the new medium-duty chassis cabs allow more air to circulate inside the engine compartment as well as more cooling air through the grille and bumper. Both these design changes helped engineers get more power from the engine.

Of course, some of the biggest changes for these work trucks are inside the cab: Ram has taken many of its popular cabin material choices and layouts from the 2500 and 3500 HD lineup and moved them into chassis-cab trucks. So these, too, get the available massive 12-inch touchscreen and a newly designed dashboard and console layout.

The 2019 Ram chassis cabs will be offered in four trim levels — Tradesman, SLT, Laramie and the all-new Limited — for all three grade levels. At first glance, the idea of offering a fully loaded chassis cab doesn't make much sense because most will be specially upfitted as ambulances, cargo haulers or school buses, but Head of Ram Brand-North America Jim Morrison said the company has seen many equestrian enthusiasts personalize and upgrade the chassis cabs they use to tow their horse trailers thousands of miles per year. Ram is targeting that market with improved chassis-cab interior materials and features straight from the factory.v

All the technology investment made in the new 2019 Ram 2500 and 3500 HD models moves straight into the chassis cabs in the form of more available safety features, including adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking, park assist, a cargo-view camera in the bed, six-wheel tire pressure monitoring, adaptive front headlights and more.

The new 2019 Ram 3500, 4500 and 5500 chassis cabs will go on sale by summer, with pricing released closer to their on-sale date.

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