Note: These notes are only about my search for our first truck in 2018

(update 1/6/18) The 2018 Ram 3500 had minor changes to engine in but 2019 is expected to be when the body style changes. I’ve also started looking a polls on RV forums where it’s asked what truck you tow with. In the dually category the RAM usually is more popular than the Ford, followed by the Chevy/GMC at a close 2nd.

In 2017 the Ram Laramie is my other truck within the group of one tons that have leather interior options. However, they need to up their horse power ratings because every one else is leaving them behind. Horse power maintains your speed, in particular on hills, after the torch gets you up to speed. Chevy/GMC has the best horse power but Ford has the better torch. The Laramie Longhorn is outside my budget and I don’t like the interior which is the same reason the Ford King Ranch is off the list. Motortrend is a good place to start research with a their search function at the top of the page.

  • Dodge Ram 3500HD. SLT, Larime and Larime Longhorn (1/2/16)
  • I’ve been hearing Ram is working on their big changes for 2018. (12/26/16). They noted seeing a hood scoop on the truck.  I believe Chevy changed their hood in 2017, adding a scoop, because a new engine design. Update us the capabilities were increased as the 2018 was introduced in September of 2017. There is talk the 1500 series will be all new for 2019 and for the 2019 model year they will be switching factories around which will allow for a period of time an expansion from two to three factories. The 3500 for 2018 exceeds the 2017 Ford F350 in towing capacity.
  • Many say the Cummings diesel is the best in the business.
  • I’m still confirming this but I saw a chart where for trucks, Ford is the #1 seller followed by the combined totals for Chevy/GMC then Dodge. However when separated from the Chevy Silverado totals, the Ram outsells the GMC Sierra in 2016.
    • 1st – Ford F Series
    • 2nd – Chevy Silverado
    • 3rd – Ram
    • 4th – GMC Sierra
  • I found a 2017 poll in the Montana fifth wheel owners forum which showed Ram 3500 dually is used to tow nearly twice as often as the Ford F350 dually. That’s a big number and perhaps the greatest reason to choice the Ram over the Ford.

2017 Ram Lineup2017 Ram Lineup

  • Here is an active Ram Truck forum.
  • Here is a good article on the Ram heavy duty truck transmissions. Have to decide between the 68RFE and Aisin. I should point out the high output Cummins engine is only available with the Aisin transmission. Here is a forum post comparing the 68RFE and Aisin transmissions. Our truck will have one or the other.  The 66RFE is for lighter trucks. I’m reading the Aisin requires fluid changes at 30,000 miles and the 68RFE does not.
  • I’m leaning towards getting the factory install air suspension. Forums are saying it’s not an easy addition at a dealership later. Also, they change the springs which reportedly makes for a better ride when unloaded. The factory air is also auto leveling when towing and when not.  Some right adding a third party system later is not much cheaper than the factory version if you have having it installed with labor and parts.
  • Leaning towards the Ram because it’s about $4,000 less than a Ford. And Ford only has two features I’d rather have in their truck, for the 2018 models. Which is their mirror system and side warning indicators when someone is next to your lane.
  • After talking with a lot of people, they say equip the truck for towing, don’t worry about the times we are not as we will not have a second car. So I’m leaning towards a 4.10 gear ratio.