Slideshow: 2020 Ram Heavy Duty

Big and beefy 2020 Ram HD wins with tech and torque, but not towing

Ram has revitalized its trucks lineup and the heavy-duty models are benefitting from innovations that started with the redesign of the Ram 1500.

Photo courtesy of Fiat Chrysler N.V.

They're strong and sturdy, but don't count out their creature comforts. Heavy-duty trucks have come a long way in the last decade and the latest offering from Ram, Ford, and GM prove that buyers no longer have to sacrifice modern technology when they shop for capability. While Ford's Super Duty has the towing capacity title, Ram's HDs follow closely behind and sports more high-tech features.

This slideshow features the 2020 Ram HD trucks in various trim levels, pointing out their features and equipment.

2020 Ram Power Wagon

Photo courtesy of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V.

The Power Wagon is a mid grade 2020 Ram 2500 and 3500 trim level designed specifically for off-roading and job-conquering capability.

Ram Heavy Duty Interior: Limited

Photo courtesy of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V.

Each truck trim level has a different design theme, not just different seat cover materials.

2020 Ram 2500 Heavy Duty Big Horn Mega Cab

Photo courtesy of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V.

This model is powered by a standard 6.4-liter HEMI V8 engine that is paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. Two different 6.7-liter inline six-cylinder diesel powertrain options are available.

2020 Ram 3500 Heavy Duty Limited Crew Cab Dually

Photo courtesy of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V.

The Limited is Ram's top-tier trim level.

2020 Ram 3500 Heavy Duty Longhorn Mega Cab Dually

Photo courtesy of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V.

The Laramie Longhorn trim is Ram's mid-grade model.

2020 Ram 3500 Heavy Duty Big Horn Sport Regular Cab

Photo courtesy of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V.

Buyers can get the Ram 3500 in a very basic setup allowing for impressive capability which minding tight budgets.

The 2020 Ram 2500 and 3500 are expected to go on sale at dealerships near the beginning of the year.

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Nuts & Bolts

 
 

The 2021 Ram TRX is the chief competitor to the Ford F-150 Raptor.

Photo courtesy of FCA US LLC

Ram Trucks calls the 2021 Ram TRX an "apex predator", serving it up as a direct rival to the 2020 Ford F-150 Raptor. The new TRX is a heck of a truck, and that's an impressive feat considering just how bloody good the Raptor is.

A quick recap of the TRX's impressive stats. Its 702 horsepower and 650 pound-feet of torque are generated by a supercharged 6.2-liter V8 that sends power to all four wheels via an eight-speed ZF automatic transmission. The sprint to 60 mph takes just 4.5 seconds off the line, and it'll hit an electronically-limited 118 mph.

2021 Ram TRX The Ram TRX has a beefy exterior with bits and bobs that give it a more aggressive appearance.Photo courtesy of FCA US LLC

It's a Hellcat in pickup truck form, so it drives a lot like you'd imagine. At least, on the street. The truck's full-time all-wheel drive system prevents you from doing burnouts, but it will bias power to the rear so you can get your slide on. Sport mode stiffens up the suspension a bit and tightens up the steering. It's by no means a sports car, but engineers have done everything they could to make the truck drive well on the street. You can quickly forget you're piloting a 3-ton brick; but fortunately the 15-inch front brakes save you from getting into real trouble.

Once you get off the tarmac, as expected, the TRX really shines. The truck has 13-inches of front suspension travel, and 14-inches of travel in the rear. The truck is designed to use every inch of travel, and handle it well, thanks to the 2.5-inch Bilstein Black Hawk e2 adaptive performance shocks. These shocks are state-of-the-art, and the same quality you'd find in bespoke off-road racers. While the Fox LiveValve in the Raptor is a good setup, driving the TRX on any off-road surface quickly shows the weaknesses of the Ford's setup. Ram's suspension feels expensive.

The TRX sits on a frame that is lengthened and beefed-up compared the traditional 1500 setup, giving it much improved body rigidity. During the product development stage, Ram engineers took a few Raptors and drove them until they broke, then made sure that they beefed up those components on the TRX. That means the TRX can handle more ridiculous terrain at more ridiculous speed, and still drive you home at the end of the day.

2021 Ram TRX The TRX is capable of having a good time, whether it's on the trail or on the track.Photo courtesy of FCA US LLC

While driving on a high-speed, 3-mile off-road route, the investment in strength was noticeable. It's hard to make a ladder frame rigid, even a fully boxed one. While on the Raptor – even the new one – the bed will shake a bit off-road, the TRX's bed hardly moves in similar situations and speeds. It feels solid, and it feels controllable.

Ford calls the Raptor the "911 of off-roaders," and they're right, because it's one of the best handling trucks off road. But the TRX has more stability in the same driving situations and feels just as predictable and controllable. If the Raptor does have an advantage at off-road speed, it's that it's lighter. Especially in the front where a turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 naturally weighs less than a 6.2-liter V8 with a supercharger attached. The TRX's nose just feels heavier.

A raptor is a bird of prey, and I've jumped my share of Raptors in my day. The TRX is just as capable at getting airborne. In fact, the extra horsepower makes it easier to leave Terra Firma. That Bilstein suspension, though, makes coming back down easier.

2021 Ram TRX The 2021 Ram TRX has a more robust frame than the traditional Ram 1500.Photo courtesy of FCA US LLC

Even at high speeds, when the truck returns to the ground the body motion is controlled. There's no excessive bouncing while the suspension tries to sort things out. The suspension simply compresses, rebounds, and then you're on your way. The whole time the wheels are on the ground you have traction and are in control. This truck makes jumping easy.

The TRX comes in a few different trim levels, depending on how much luxury you want in your truck. You can spec the truck to almost $100,000 and have all the amenities in a Ram 1500 Limited but be able to pre-run the Baja 1000 in comfort and style.

Or, pick up a base truck at $71,690 with destination and get the least expensive FCA product with the Hellcat engine in it and with all-wheel drive, plus a comfortable daily driver with all of the trick off-road features.

2021 Ram TRX The 2021 Ram TRX is plenty capable on paved roads as well.Photo courtesy of FCA US LLC

It sounds better than the Raptor. It's faster than the Raptor. It flies better than the Raptor. For now, at least, the claim that the TRX is the Apex Predator of the truck world is accurate.

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The GMC Hummer Edition 1 is the first Hummer EV that will be avaalibe.

Photo courtesy of GMC

The Hummer name has officially returned to the automotive world. General Motors has brought back the moniker for the 2022 GMC Hummer EV, a fully electric truck that will arrive on dealership lots in 2021.

The numbers are the sexiest bits of the reveal. The Hummer EV Edition 1 delivers 1,000 horsepower, has a 350-mile all-electric range, and goes for $112,959. Yes, one hundred twelve thousand, nine hundred fifty-nine American dollars.

Built on GM's new flexible architecture, the Hummer EV fits between the traditional and extended wheelbase sizes of the 2021 GMC Yukon and Cadillac Escalade. It's over a foot longer than the Hummer H2 and a few inches taller than the Ford F-150 Raptor.

2022 GMC Hummer EV Where a traditional hood and engine would be is instead a front trunk.Photo courtesy of GMC

At its front is an illuminated six-slot grille with the unmistakable "Hummer" lettering emblazoned across the front. Slim headlights flank the grille above a rough-and-ready bumper and skid plate. The Hummer's windshield is upright, which is reminiscent of the model's heritage.

GMC will only sell the 2022 Hummer EV in one cab style - a four-door that is paired with a short bed. Think of this as similar to the Jeep Gladiator.

Every Hummer EV will come with the company's Infinity Roof as standard equipment. That means that the Hummer EV is a t-top style convertible that blends truck and sky by removing four Sky Panels that can be stowed in the Hummer's front trunk.

Like the GMC Sierra, the Hummer EV will come with the versatile MultiPro tailgate. Rear drop glass and a power tonneau cover are available.

It's long wheelbase allows for the truck's Ultium battery pack to sit under the floor in the middle. The truck will be first to market as an Edition 1 grade with a 200-kilowatt-hour battery back. That battery is attached to two motors at the front and one at the rear producing 1,000 horsepower and 11,500 pound-feet of torque. Other forthcoming Hummer variants are set to have unique powertrain setups.

2022 GMC Hummer EV The Hummer EV comes standard with a short bed.Photo courtesy of GMC

GMC has given each Hummer EV four-wheel drive allowing it to have CrabWalk mode, which utilizes torque vectoring technology. When activating that mode, the Hummer EV to move diagonally.

It also allows the truck to have a launch mode called “Watts to Freedom". Yes, you read that correctly. WTF mode. It allows the Hummer EV Edition 1 to travel from zero to 60 mph in three seconds.

The 2022 GMC Hummer EV Edition 1 will have 350 miles of range and be capable of charging via an 800-volt DC fast-charger and a 350-kilowatt charger. The Hummer is the first EV to have this capability, which allows it to gain 100 miles of range in 10 minutes.

The Hummer EV also offers adjustable ride height functionality, shock damping that can respond to input at the rate of 500 times per second, and stability control, all of which are controlled to varying degrees using the truck's drive modes. It has two differential lockers.

GMC has given the truck an Extract Mode, which raises the Hummer EV's ride height by six inches and gives the truck a 50-degree approach angle. In total, there's eight inches of height adjustability and the truck is capable of 13 inches of front-to-rear travel.

Also, it can scale 18-inch vertical walls and has 2-feet of water fording capability. GMC says that the truck has an 11.3-meter turning radius, which is tighter than what the Chevrolet Sonic is capable of.

2022 GMC Hummer EV

Photo courtesy of GMC

The Hummer EV runs on standard 18-inch wheels that are wrapped in 35-inch Goodyear Wrangler All Territory MT tires. Up to 37-inch tires will fit on the truck without modification.

GMC has covered the entire underbody of the truck with steel plates and affixed two cameras and their washers that allow drivers to see obstacles ahead.

Inside, the Hummer EV is minimalistic but effectively designed. In front of the driver is a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster while a 13.4-inch infotainment screen sits in the center of the dashboard. The two screens are powered by Epic Games' Unreal Engine, the same architecture that Fortnite runs on.

GMC hasn't divulged much about the specific interior appointments but does say that they're "premium".

The automaker is putting its Super Cruise hands-free driver assist technology on every Hummer.

The Edition 1 model will be first out of the gate with deliveries slated to begin in fall 2021. Pricing for the Edition 1 starts at $112,595. That will be followed by lower-priced, less-powerful models in a cadence that won't fully roll out until spring 2024.

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