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New car reviews

2017 Ram 2500 HD

Ram Heavy Duty trucks add factory Night black-out package

Bob Plunkett, Thu, 12 Oct 2017 11:04:49 PDT

CHICAGO, Ill. -- At the 2017 Chicago Auto Show, the Ram brand of behemoth big pickups unveiled new special-edition Night packages for Ram 2500 (three-quarter-ton) and 3500 (one-ton) Heavy Duty trucks.

Ram's new Night editions amount to factory-custom kits based on the monochromatic Sports appearance package components with body-color wheel flares.

A massive get-out-of-my-way prow dominates the design of Ram 2500/3500 HD trucks with the stair-step hood of a big-rig Peterbilt and a gigantic horse-collar grille.

The factory-installed equipment includes a black grille ring with black billet inserts, black-bezel headlamps, body-color-painted steel front and rear bumpers, 20-inch black-painted aluminum wheels and LT285/60R20E OWL on/off-road tires.

At the tail, the Night editions score a stamped tailgate with blacked-out R-A-M lettering.

Black rectangular running boards are optional.

In the cabin, Ram 2500/3500 HD Night editions add high-back heated cloth vinyl bucket seats with 10-way power controls, power-adjustable pedals plus dual-zone automatic temperature control for two Crew Cab configurations: 6-passenger (front 3-seat bench) or 5-passenger (front twin buckets with center console).

Ram 2500/3500 HD Night editions (single-rear-wheel models only) come in five paint shades: Brilliant Black Crystal, Bright Silver Metallic, Bright White, Granite Crystal Metallic and Delmonico Red Pearl.

Three powertrains options apply to 2500/3500 HD Night editions: A 5.7-liter HEMI V-8, 6.4-liter HEMI V-8 or 6.7-liter Cummins I6 turbo-diesel.

Ram's 5.7-liter HEMI V8 with VVT (variable valve timing) musters 383 hp at 5600 rpm plus 400 lb-ft of torque at 4000 rpm. The muscle produced by an electronically controlled automatic 6-speed transmission, the 66RFE.

Ram's 6.4-liter HEMI V8 with VVT delivers 410 hp at 5600 rpm and massive torque pumped up to 429 lb-ft at 4000 rpm. The 66RFE automatic 6-speed transmission also applies to the 6.4-liter HEMI.

Ram 2500/3500 HD trucks also list a 6.7-liter inline-6 Cummins turbo-diesel engine which pumps up to 350 hp at 2800 rpm and 660 lb-ft of torque at only 1500 rpm when linked to a G56 6-speed manual transmission, or 370 hp at 2800 rpm and 800 lb-ft of torque at 1600 rpm with the 68RFE 6-speed automatic. For Ram 3500 a high output version hits 385 hp at 2800 rpm plus 900 lb-ft of torque at 1700 rpm coupling to the AS69RC 6-speed automatic.

The towing weight capacity of the Ram 3500 HD with the Cummins high output turbo-diesel rises to 31,210 pounds when properly equipped.

Traction choices include rear-wheel 2-wheel-drive (2WD) or 4-wheel-drive (4WD). With 4WD traction, Borg-Warner part-time transfer cases are available. The BW 44-46 unit is an electric shifting part-time transfer case with 2WD/4WD-High/4WD-Low/Neutral. The BW 44-47 version is a manual shifting transfer case in 2WD/4WD-High/4WD-Low/Neutral. Both versions get a low-range ratio of 2.64 plus locking differential from front to rear.

Brakes to rein so much tonnage with such powerful engines by necessity must be big and strong. The Ram design installs four massive discs. Front rotors measure 14.17 inches in diameter and are clasped with dual-piston calipers, as rear rotors span to 14.09 inches and also use dual-piston calipers.

The big brakes tie to a computerized anti-lock brake system (ABS) plus an electronic stability control (ESC) device to nix lateral skidding.

Ram HD Night edition pricing begins at $45,520 for the Ram 2500 HD truck.

 

 


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