2011 Ram 3500 Review

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2011 Ram 3500 Overview

The 2011 Ram 3500 rates right up there with the big boys in the power pickup league, and it muscles and finesses itself to the very top, some believe.

The muscle comes courtesy of the turbocharged 6.7-liter Cummins inline-6 diesel engine that gets these rigs around to the tune of 350 horsepower and 650 lb-ft of torque. They have a manual six-speed transmission standard with a six-speed automatic available. Chrysler also sets the 2011 Ram 3500 – it’s branding the truck that way after dropping Dodge in the name – up with an exhaust brake uncommon for a pickup this size and designed to help with stability and braking when towing heavy loads.

The beefed-up braking can come in handy. The Ram 3500 certainly holds its own in the pulling department and when set up properly can tow up to 17,600 pounds and also is capable of hauling a payload of 4,620 pounds. The 2011 Ram 3500 comes in either rear-wheel drive (RWD) or four-wheel drive (4WD). It has standard dual rear wheels, though single rear wheels are available.

The finesse side comes with the classy exterior styling of the pickup and an interior that has been revamped and refined in the last couple of years to more closely resemble the well-regarded Ram 1500. Reviewers seem fairly unanimous in their approval of the changes. For the most part, they rank the seats up there with the best in the class for comfort and grade the rest of the roomy cabin highly, too. Some have noted that in upper trims it may be even too nice for what is still a brawny work truck when it comes right down to it.

Chrysler delivers the 2011 Ram 3500 in ST, SLT or Laramie trims, and there are two or three cab sizes available, the Regular, Crew Cab and Mega Cab, depending on the trim. Buyers of the SLT alone have a choice of any of the three cabs. The Regular cab is available with the ST or SLT trims and the Mega Cab with the SLT or Laramie. A spray-in bedliner is available, and the navigation system has been updated.

Vinyl upholstery, tilt-wheel steering, air conditioning, a tire pressure monitor and a six-speaker stereo system with CD player come standard with the base ST trim. The SLT gets electronic trailer brake control, cloth upholstery, full power accessories, keyless entry, satellite radio and cruise control. A new Outdoorsman package available with the SLT adds power driver and passenger seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and audio controls, tow hooks and a limited-slip rear differential.

Chrysler loads the Laramie trim with dual-zone automatic climate control, skid plates on the 4WD version, leather seats, power adjustable pedals, rear parking sensors, a nine-speaker surround sound audio system and other goodies.

Four-wheel ABS, traction and stability control, an assortment of airbags and a post-collision safety system are all part of the 2011 Ram 3500’s safety setup. The Laramie comes with added features including fog/driving lights and a remote anti-theft alarm, which are optional in the SLT. The exhaust brake and electronic trailer brake control are safety pluses, too, as is the sheer size of the 3500, which will help protect folks inside in the event of a crash.

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