UPDATE Apr 26, 2017 / Because the Ram 1500 is approaching the end of its life, we started to see more development mules lately. Most of these feature some very interesting differences over the ongoing models of the trucks but more on that a bit later. It seems that the new model might be released with the 2018 Ram 1500 which is set to be revealed in late 2018. The truck will likely become available shortly after that to compete with its newly released rivals. The price is still unknown at this point, but we doubt it will change much. In fact, the base version is still going to cost under $30,000 with its top end models going way past that.
One of the largest differences seen on the test mules for the 2018 Ram is the wheel lug pattern. The current model boasts a 5-lug pattern with the new model going for a 6-lug pattern. This is likely because the towing capacity, as well as the overall payload, will increase by a significant margin and the FCA Group is looking to make it easier for their customers to buy aftermarket wheels. On top of that, the brake rotors seem to be larger, especially in the front. The wheelbase also seems to have changed. The double-cab model spied recently had a shorter wheelbase than before. This is more than likely because a brand new cab option will be revealed with this generation in the form of the mega-cab.
What about the Performance?
The 2018 Ram 1500 is set to receive an extensive rework of its chassis and running gear. Beefier axles will be installed but thanks to a part-aluminum body it shouldn’t weigh much more than before. The engines will be similar to those found in the current model. Both the 3.6 liters naturally aspirated V6, and the 3-liter EcoDiesel will be carried over with minimal changes. However, the 5.7 liter V8 is expected to be discontinued together with the larger 6.4 liter V8. In their place, it seems that Ram could offer a twin-turbocharged V6, likely a 3.6-liter unit. This could easily provide more than either of the two V8 engines while also using less fuel. An eight-speed automatic is likely going to remain standard across the range.
Design – Inside and Out
So far all test mules for the future Ram 1500 used the same sheet metal as the outgoing model. The only changes have been made to the cab so far which was smaller on the double-cab model and significantly longer on the future mega-cab. On top of these changes, the truck will receive a new more aerodynamic front end as well as a new tailgate with an integrated set of steps.
Aug 21, 2016 – The current Ram 1500 is the oldest among its rivals and that is quite obvious when looking at its sales numbers. While a new model has not been confirmed by Ram so far, we just caught the first glimpse of it in the form of a camouflaged development mule. This is still using the same body as the older Ram but with quite a few modifications which we are going to talk about next. For starters, Ram announced a while ago that their new truck will be revealed in 2018. This will make it nearly four years late but it should give them an advantage over Ford and GM which will only offer small updates of their trucks then.
2018 Ram 1500 Price, Chassis and Running Gear
Like before, the new 2018 Ram 1500 is going to use a body on frame design which will offer the durability its customers want. This time around the chassis will be primarily be made out of high strength steel. The body is also expected to use high strength steel in combination with aluminum. The latter is needed in order to make the truck compliant with the latest CAFE regulations. However, unlike Ford which has a full aluminum body, the Ram is expected to only offer a few body panels like the fenders, doors and likely the hood and roof. Its price is still unknown at this point but we do expect it to be quite similarly priced to the older model, around $28,000.
So far we can’t say much about the 2018 Ram 1500’s design mostly because Ram hasn’t given us any concept in a while. However, we can say that the new 1500 will be bigger than the older truck. The development mule has its entire mid-section camouflaged, right after the A-pillars and up until the middle of the bed. On the roof of the truck, we can see rivets which mean that Ram used them in order to add to the length. The truck also seems to be slightly wider than the regular 1500 as well. While the length will most likely be added to a special edition with a new cabin, the width should be present across the range.
There shouldn’t be all that many differences between the upcoming model and what is currently available. In its cabin, we will likely see an evolution which should allow people to get to know the truck faster. We do know that it will very likely use an all-new infotainment system. Also, the longer truck is definitely going to offer quite a bit more room on the rear seats which will also benefit from larger rear doors as well.
Engine and Transmission
We are quite sure that the upcoming 2018 Ram 1500 is going to be offered with a single choice in terms of gearboxes, an eight-speed automatic which was previously used on the diesel. Its engines won’t be all that impressive either. While we still hope for the Ram 1500 to feature a twin-turbocharged V6, we are quite sure that the new model will be similar to the current version. This means that the base truck might still offer the same 3.6 liter V6 as before but with minor upgrades. The 3 liter turbocharged EcoDiesel is also here to stay. This is likely going to still make 240 horsepower and 420 lb-ft of torque which with the lower weight should feel quite a bit better than before. The 5.7 liter V8 Hemi is also a real possibility even though it will be discontinued in their cars. Some people also suggested that the Ram could also receive a hybrid version. This is still just a rumor at this point but it would allow Ram to get in front of Ford and GM in terms of technology and fuel efficiency.