News

291KW V8 powered dual cab for under $80k? Yep, really.

It seems the prayers of many punters have been answered with Ram announcing their newest member to the Australian family: The Ram 1500. It’s a 291kW V8 powered dual cab mid-sized ute, that’s gonna give the big players a run for their money; literally. 

Most of us will know the massive $130,000 Ram 2500HD with the 6.7L Cummins diesel donk, and this 1500 is the little brother. The new Ram 1500 is, for the most part, built in the US of A, with final manufacturing being completed down under. They are fully ADR compliant, and will be classed as a mid-size ute. This puts the Ram 1500 in direct competition with the likes of the Ford Ranger Wildtrak, V6 Amarok, Toyota HiLux and Nissan Navara; although it’s a touch bigger in size.

After the Ford Raptor was released to a collective groans from punters with it’s 2-litre, twin-turbo 4-pot diesel engine, it seems a lot of the market want a performance based, petrol powered, dual cab ute. Well, here it is. 

The Driveline

The 1500 utilises Chryslers Hemi 5.7 litre V8, making a solid 291kW @ 5,600rpm, and 556Nm @3,950. Speaking in general terms, this is on par with the Nissan Patrol VK56 engine, or Chev’s LS2. That said, should you still want a diesel option, you can look up to the 2500/3500 series, with the 6.7L Cummins, or wait for later in the year, when the 3-litre V6 diesel donk arrives for the Ram 1500 (we’ll let you know when we hear more).

There’s an 8-speed auto box hanging off the back of the Hemi, with a part-time 4WD system and low-range transfer case. So, wheeling the backside out of this thing won’t be an issue.

2019 Ram 1500 – RamBox – Yes, this is an option!

Towing

This is the all-important one considering the recent changes to GCM upgrades, and the Ram hits the industry standard 3.5T with ease. That said, and this is where it gets interesting, you can have that upped to 4.5T at no extra cost, however with shorter diff ratios (from 3.21:1 to 3.92:1). This obviously trades a touch of on-road efficiency for more punch with lower overall gearing (read: final drive).

On the GCM figures, unfortunately, we’ve not got an answer just yet; however we should have a figure soon – Watch this space, as we’ll update it when we know more!

ASV RAM Australia

But how thirsty will it be!?

We can already hear the diesel crowd (yep, I’m one of them) laughing all the way to the bowser up against a 291kW V8 Petrol engine. But, (and I’m more than a little miffed at this), the 1500 with 5.7L-Hemi will make a combined fuel total of 9.9L per 100km. Yep, you read that right. This will, of course, depend on how much the owner enjoys the ‘V8-Hemi wide-open-throttle scream’, and how far the foot gets buried. That said, it’s exceptional economy is helped along by the variable valve timing and cylinder deactivation technology.

We are a little sceptical on the numbers truth be told, but as soon as we can get our bums in seats, we’ll be testing it out in real-world conditions and will report back!

But when can I have one?!

Sooner than you’d think. The first lot (Top-end Laramie spec – $99,950) will be available from July (yep, 3 weeks away). Then we’re expecting to see the mid-range ‘Express’ spec model ($79,950) in September, followed closely by the V6 diesel variant and a ‘black pack’ nearer to the end of the year.

All-in-all these things look the goods, are bigger than every other mid-sized ute on the market, have some serious performance cred, and not a massive ‘Murica style ‘Truck’ that the 2500/3500HD are, so you’ll still get these into a single car spot down at Woolies. And there priced pretty darn well.

Let us know in the comments below if a 291KW, V8 powered dual cab ute is something you’d put on the shopping list.

 

68 Comments

Click here to post a comment

  • Always loved diesel 4bys,but I seriously need a tow vehicle for my big work trailer.
    So I took the 1500 Ram for a test drive – all bull s#@* a side the power and acceleration was on par if not better than my misses 200 series (chipped and pedal throttle) Let me till ya’s it gets up and boogies!

  • Ok, so they’re not being imported by RAM trucks – i.e. not factory backed. The article above seems to be based on the ASV import – numerous other companies also hold import and conversion approvals (or varying quality) from the Federal government. So, realllly do your homework before buying one.

  • Strange, all the enthusiasm for a petrol V8 that will require 95 Octane fuel. Especially one as agricultural as a 2 valve, push rod, Dodge Hemi. Nissan has been selling a well designed, high tech, quad cam, 32 valve, petrol V8 powered 4×4 wagon into the market for some years. It has been universally slammed for its fuel consumption and the fact that it needs 95 Octane..
    My guess is that Nissans economy is same as/slightly better than the RAM will be able to produce on a fair comparison, so why are Nissan not selling more Patrols.

  • When you test pleeeeease fill the tank, load the vehicle with 2 adults n kids and a full Engel etc and pull a fair dinkum 3tonne OR van and take it off road and plant the foot. Too many times these fuel usage figures are bollocks because they are “tested” with Just a driver,?unladen pulling an empty 2.2t on road van.

    Guy can borrow mine 🙂

  • I have a 2015 Quad Cab Laramie Diesel its Power to weight is 74 W/kg
    and the equivalent Toyota Landy 5 seater has a power to weight of 68W/kg
    mine averages 10.5 Lper 100, in fact towing a 16 ft quintrex five people and all stuff to go fishing and camping in the gulf it averages 15.5 l per 100. Trust me these are nice vehicles and most who buy them will not be disappointed.

  • Bring it over! bring it on!
    I’ll take one of these over the current boring diesels utes anytime! at 9.9 L/100, it still drinks a bit more than the current utes but who cares when it’s 10 times the fun. Had a Grand Cherokee with 5.7L Hemi before and boy, that sounding V8 is music to the ears. Shame it drank over 20L/100km so that kind hurts the pocket a bit. 9.9L is absolutely bearable. Sorry to some Diesel fans but since the introduction of the 4 and 5 cylinders diesel motors into our shores, it’s almost shameful chuckling along with that pedestrian sound of the diesel. Had a Prado 3L Diesel for less than 6 months and sold it off. Absolutely gutless below 1600rpm and not a lot happening after either. The newer Hilux 2.8L was not much better either and there was not much other choices. Finally, something to rejoice!

  • it’ll probably be like everything else american – made to a price to also 2 years and throw away.
    And like all utes with part time 4wd and solid rear axles that were first invented to accommodate an egyptian’s army chariot.
    The utes with solid rear axles on leaf springs should be banned off our roads but the govt allows then as it gets rid of grey nomad off the pension list by putting them in hospital either in intensive care or the orthopedic ward.

    If you don’t value your life or your family’s safety it will then it would be a good buy if it was sold same price as the jap crap utes. At the price your forecasting then it is nothing but a scam!

  • The Ram might be a good jigger but what about the crappy dealer warranty and customer bad relationship after purchase. Look at the Jeep customer poor after sales customer service. Pitty about that.

  • Yep, I agree with the bloke about the over rated & priced Toyoata Cruiser. I’ve had three and only buy because they are a wagon, but with a hard cover on the Ute I very well might become a Ute owner & I wouldn’t have a problem with the petrol 8 if those fuel tigers are correct !!!!

  • Got a 2015 colorado to tow a 3 t boat uses 20/21 lt per km when towing boat and around 12 to 13 empty dearer then petrol to tun.
    so even if it uses more then advertised i would still be ok with that but price would stop me buying one. Would love the v8

  • Watching this space with intrepedation V6 like the current Navara or a V8 petrol, 550 has been faultless, but time to pass it on for a new duel cab, an the 1500 might be just the ticket

  • WOW, wadda know, there is a car manufacturer out there that heard us V8 4×4 loving Aussie’s. And wot a V8 it is. HEMI’s rock… And sitting infront of an 8 speed auto aswell. This Ram1500 is going to realy move out. Muscle Dual Cab or what.
    I was excited to drive the Ford Ranger Raptor but sorry Ford, 157kw with 10 speed auto just became old news to me and can not compare to 291kw with 8 speed auto. And thats 291 detuned for emission regulation kw’s too. Not that you would need too but these Hemi’s are like the LS engines, in the way that with a few not to expencive modifications, they will unleash a lot of extra reliable horse power again. Make no mistake, this is muscle car spec in 4×4 and will be awsom. I won’t be towing anything, but I’m sure the people that do won’t complain, i just love my V8’s in 4×4’s and like to be first off the lights, so this will suit me great.
    Interior looks great too and the ramboxs are a great idea. Now i just wish they would listen to us on the price, 60/65 grand would be a lot better, lol.
    Thankyou Ram…

  • WOW, wadda know, there is a car manufacturer out there that heard us V8 4×4 loving Aussie’s. And wot a V8 it is. HEMI’s rock… And sitting infront of an 8 speed auto aswell. This Ram1500 is going to realy move out. Muscle Dual Cab or what.
    I was excited to drive the Ford Ranger Raptor but sorry Ford, 157kw with 10 speed auto just became old news to me and can not compare to 291kw with 8 speed auto. And thats 291 detuned for emission regulation kw too. Not that you would need too but these Hemi’s are like the LS engines, in the way that with a few not to expencive modifications, they will unleash a lot of extra reliable horse power again. Make no mistake, this is muscle car spec in 4×4 and will be awsom. I won’t be towing anything, but I’m sure the people that do won’t complain, i just love my V8’s in 4×4’s and like to be first off the lights, so this will suit me great.
    Interior looks great too and the ramboxs are a great idea. Now i just wish they would listen to us on the price, 60/65 grand would be a lot better, lol.
    Thankyou Ram…

  • I hired the V8 Ram Rebel in California for 10 days…. it’s a cruising machine with effortless V8 get-up – didn’t get any offroad time so can’t comment on that… but heaps of space inside and well kitted out… absolutely loved it and would look at buying one here – s**ts all over the other utes in the Aus market.

  • I have been looking at the big RAM, but this smaller version would suit me really nice.
    Will be closely following the 1500, and yes the diesel version would be my preference.
    As mentioned earlier, the obsession with EU standards is over the top as are all the Greenies. Give me a large and lazy donk that is under stressed any time for reliability and longevity.
    Dodge, bring it on!

  • Yes please, honey, dearest, I’ll cook dinner all next year, can I please, grovel? It’s only a just a little more to get the 2500, can we?

  • But why the heck do we have to pay more than twice the price for the same vehicle as in America. Can’t see the logic in that one or maybe it is just that they can & they know we will pay. Not fair. But yes a v8 petrol sounds good to the ear & to the performance of towing big loads.

  • Bl##dy oath, although I’d personally go the heavier tow option. Chews less petrol than my 4.0L petrol Grand Cherokee, by a fair bit.
    Be interesting to see about how many dealerships are in Australia, for services and such.

  • Finally!! I just want a big dual cab with room for the motorbikes in the back and still close the tailgate.
    V8 @ 9.9lt per 100km? Ummm Having owned both the 5.7 hemi and v6 diesel jeep grand cherokee (Same motors) I would say they are talking crap, hence why i got the v6 diesel.
    The 5.7lt at the best light footed time got was…
    11.8lt per 100 unloaded and 2 people,
    15.6lt per 100 with 3 people, 3 bikes, trailer and camp gear at hwy speeds
    and usually between 17lt to 21lt per 100 in city driving.

    Would it deter me from the 1500? No way!! I want one!

    Also, whats the deal with everyone wanting full time awd? part time 4wd is way more off road bias and gives you more control and efficiency over all terrains.

  • I’m not om the market for a ute, but the Dodge 1500 would be high on the list as a diesel AND WITH MANUAL TRANSMISSION!!!!!

  • About time. Aussies who tow boats and other heavy loads want what the yanks have had for years, and the Ford raptor with a buzz box engine screaming it’s head off with twin turbos yeah like that’s going to last a long time. it irks me that the European market dictates via emissions what we get on oz.
    I Have the old v6 Navara (could not afford the overpriced landcruiser) the v6 Navara was scrapped when the ecu decided to get rid of large capacity engines now they are looking to ban diesels altogether.

  • Some people really need to do some more homework,
    Carlos, of course the steering box will be on the right hand drive, just google the Ram Conversion.
    Greg, No they are not being offered by Dodge, because dodge dontmake them it is now RAM TRUCKS and is owned by Alfa Romeo, the same company that is importing these and having the Walkinshaw factory do the conversions thanks to a deal donne by of all people the Kiwi’s.

    All that said, I drive a bigger American diesel V8 Ute, ( that by the way still fits into a single car park at most shopping centres) and hell yeah I might just look at trading down some time.
    Rumble on V8 owners

  • I’m not into American Style 4WD and for all those people ranting about how shitty diesel is, you got no idea! V8s belong in muscle cars, not glorified Utes…
    But having said that, part time 4WD is a no no when it runs city tyres… The ram box option is a very good idea, 3.5T towing but with shorter ratio? Have to get final consumption figures on both set ups to compare the sacrifice… The Amarok is 3.5T with 8 speed AWD!!! Cmon!
    5.7L running 9.9L/100km is BS!
    This would be at best running totally empty, and at 80km/h on flat road…
    Don’t fall for that! Every car company over estimates it real consumption, just like an estate agent evaluating your property.

    This article is a teaser designed for ratings. There is so little information for us to make education decisions about this new model…

  • was gonna put a LS2 into my patrol,but now I will wait to roadtest a v8 petrol.With possibility of putting on LPG ,then I will get cheaper miles and grunt to tow.Cant wait?

  • I got my hopes yup when all the initial press hype said $70K! Then they said “Under $80K” Now it’s actually $90K when you add on-road costs (I called Ram and got pricing). Plus $3 1/2K for the rear storage box….it will very easily be close to $100k with a few ‘must have extras’ unfortunately. Still a lot of money for a very ‘base’ model truck that sells for around $US35K in it’s homeland!

  • Would like a dodge but would need a diesel engine for fuel efficiency and constant 4wd. Would need adjustable suspension to get it in and out of car parks like my landrover. Love the idea of storage compartments in the tray.

    Wanting a 6 tonne towing though. The larger pickups in the states are allowed to tow 13 tonnes.

  • I have a Land-cruiser 200 4.6L petrol V8 and love it, towing the exact same van as my mate at the same speed on the same road only uses on average 2L more per 100 (sometimes theirs no difference). But my purchase price was $20K less and my yearly service cost is less and I have no dirty diesel issues to worry about. I would buy the Ram petrol over a diesel any day of the week.

  • Let’s see if Ford rush the V6 turbo diesel into the Ranger. This motor exists in the F150.
    Have driven the RAM many times the US. Nice truck to drive however Aus is not set up for bigger trucks with parking at shops or camping sites.

  • Diesel?
    Never again would I have a Diesel.Slow,Gutless..V8 Petrol Power?
    Australia really needs to get over the Diesel love affair.Including you Pat.

  • These are already for sale here but at the converters rorting price premium of 130k.. at the prices mentioned in this article they must be arriving already RHD from factory.. NICE.. definitely a game changer.. just need the Titan to arrive in RHD now.

  • These are already for sale here but at the converters rorting price premium of 130k.. at the prices mentioned in this article they must be arriving already RHD from factory.. NICE.. definitely a game changer.. just need the Titan to arrive in RHD now.

  • 291kw and part time 4×4 would certainly make it entertaining, but to pry my wallet open it would need full time AWD and more off-road oriented suspension.

  • I have the SRT10 Dodge ram and I love it. But thats not a daily driver so having one of these as my daily work vehicle would more than be a certainty.

  • These vehicles are not being imported, converted and marketed by Dodge (FCA). This is not clear in the article. Several companies hold Federal approval to sell these and the bigger vehicles.

  • At long last a vehicle that can comfortably tow my 3.4 tonne van and get good fuel economy not like the over rated Toyota Land cruiser diesel at 25 litres per 100 kilometres. I will have my name on the list for the 1500 Dodge Ram immediately.

  • Ford took the risk with the RHD V8 Mustang which took off to number one in sports, but have lost the plot with the Ranger with a 2 litre diesel. Good on you Dodge for understanding that Aussies like large donks in their 4WD’s. The Ram 1500 will take off like hot cakes. Every dual horse float in Australia will be towed by a Ram in no time, along with a gaggle of caravans and tradies.

  • Yeah i think ill be haveing a look as soon as possible.
    I was going for the nissan titan until they pulled out of comeing to Australia.

  • About time, I thought the raptor was going to to be my next car, cancelled the order when it was announced a 2 litre diesel. This ram ticks the boxes, would love a more off road version…

  • If the build quality is good, it’s reliable, well equipped, comfortable and has a good warranty with dealer backup.. I’ll have one.. V8’s are great….

  • All those conversion companies need a return on investment but I have thought for a long time they have been taking those that want a bigger vehicle for a ride. I hope Ram does well, will be very interested in the diesel when it hits the showroom.

Get the latest 4X4 updates

Download Our Apps