I don’t know much about trucks, and I’ll be the first to admit it; I’m a sports car guy. What I do know is that people put large objects in the back of them and take that stuff from one place to another. Some people use them to drive around in the woods, and some haul boats and other vehicles behind them. So with that being the extent of my knowledge of trucks, you could imagine what I was thinking when Dodge dropped a shiny new Ram pick-up off at my doorstep a couple weeks ago.
My first impression was “damn, that thing’s big.” Climbing inside, it felt like someone had moved my living room into the truck; it had more space than my loveseat. Driving it took some getting used to. With a seating position above the tops of smaller cars, you get a strange superiority complex, which I’m sure is why many people buy something this big.
Our Dodge Ram 1500 came with a big ol’ 5.7-liter Hemi V8 under the hood which produced 390 horsepower and 407 lb/ft of torque – and it was quick. I didn’t like the steering very much; it was over-boosted, and the suspension felt a bit too bouncy for my taste. Parking it was a pain in the ass – sometimes I’d just give up and park next to the curb instead of maneuvering my way into a spot – damn thing’s too big.
Thankfully it had the optional Rear Park Assist System and backup camera, otherwise I’d probably still be on the phone with insurance. Ours also had the $1,895 “RamBox Cargo Management System” which is a series of compartments alongside the bed long enough for a shotgun, which is what I assume it would most be used for. Other options on our Ram 1500 Laramie added up to about $8,300, and includes a locking tailgate, different tires, a bigger fuel tank, sunroof, 3.92 Axle ratio, dual exhaust, leather heated seats, and rear video monitors.
The thing about these newer pickup trucks is that they convey the same rootin’ tootin’ construction worker image as they always have, but now they have stuff like heated steering wheels, DVD players, ventilated seats, over-boosted power steering, automatic headlights, and a ton of other luxury features fit for a family sedan. I’d always imagined using a pickup truck for what it was made for – carrying large and heavy things from one place to another – then going home and driving something more practical. Use the truck for work if you’re in construction or need to otherwise haul stuff, but driving this giant thing around with family everyday and on road trips seems like overkill.
I’m not going to evaluate the details of this truck compared to others, because I’d be doing you a disservice by acting like I know what I’m talking about. However, our wonderful photographer Christine took some excellent photos of this truck, so check out the pricing info below then look at the pretty pictures:
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2009 Dodge Ram 1500 Laramie Crew Cab 4×2
As Tested: $48,315
Starts at: $22,420