Six Interesting Facts About the Dodge Ram 3500
- Ever wondered about why the Dodge Ram is named as such? Avard T. Fairbanks, the designer, was the one who made the proposal. When asked by Chrysler, he responded, "It is sure-footed; it's the King of the Trail; it will not be challenged by anything. And if you were on the trail and saw that ram charging down on you, what would you think? Dodge!"
- The Dodge Ram 3500 trim line appeared during the Ram's second generation. This was the time where the model was heavily redesigned to make it look more like a big rig truck than a pickup. This facelift greatly helped the sales of the vehicle, with around 100,000 units on its first year and steadily grew on an annual basis.
- The Dodge Ram is classified as a "dually truck," meaning it has two rear tires on each side. Those two additional tires give out increased power and could carry around a ton. This makes the vehicle very capable of towing very heavy loads. This kind of truck usually hauls a racecar or a fifth-wheel Coachman with ease even up on a hill.
- A great selling point among truck enthusiasts was the engine, and the Dodge Ram 3500 had just that. In 1994 it introduced the 8.0L V10 engine, which produced superior pulling power without the need of a diesel engine. This made the model a go-to vehicle for heavy-duty work and performance.
- Though big in power, the Dodge Ram 3500 doesn't skimp on technological advancements. The 2013 model is built with Chrysler's very own Uconnect system. It is an interactive touchscreen display that gives you access to you phone, radio, and media players all in a touch of a button. It is also voice-activated, providing you with luxury even when doing industrial-sized workloads.
- When competitors adopted the Ram's "big rig" look, Dodge decided to kick it up a notch with their third generation model, which was released in 2002. In addition to the new frame, suspension, and powertrain, it also had a bigger grille, as well as special models that made it a prized vehicle amongst car enthusiasts.
Dodge Ram 3500 Problems
Designed with big rig trucks in mind, the Dodge Ram 3500 pickup was sold as a luxury vehicle that can handle heavy-duty applications very well. In fact, its latest incarnation features some of Chrysler's latest technologies. These include the Uconnect system and the Sprint-powered wireless system, as well as a better HVAC and multimedia control panel. Because of these features, buyers are geared into getting this vehicle as their pickup. Remember, however, that there are some common problems that this vehicle has. So take note of some of these issues and be prepared.
Some of the common problems involved the engine, the most prominent being the 6.7L Cummins diesel. The engine failures were caused by an unusually high level of soot being produced, which resulted in exhaust gas recirculation valve, diesel particulate filter, and turbocharger damage. This in turn affected emission levels, which were too high and greatly affected the environment.
Over 186,000 Dodge Rams were recalled in 2010 to fix the engine control module.
Another common concern for Dodge Ram 3500 owners was the handling, particularly the steering and braking aspects. In 2011, a recall of around 242,000 Dodge Ram 3500 pickups occurred due to the left tie rod ball stud. On certain trucks, it fractured when making low-speed sharp turns, causing the loss of steering on the left front wheel.
As for the braking problem, a recall was made in 2010 involving 76,000 vehicles. The issue was that some diesel models with the hydroboost system have excessive vent pressure levels. This made the brake pedals slow to return, as well as brake light responding slowly. The power steering reservoir cap, which was the main source of the problem, was replaced.
Lastly, the headlights of the Dodge Ram 3500 had issues regarding the lack of amber side reflectors. With these missing, the truck becomes poorly illuminated, which makes other vehicles incorrectly guess the width of the pickup, which could then easily cause a crash. This also fails the Federal motor Vehicle safety Standard no. 108, "Lamps, Reflective Devices, and Associated Equipment."
In response to this, 292,000 Dodge Ram 3500 units were recalled to replace the faulty headlamps.
How to Ensure You Get the Best Dodge Ram 3500 Experience
Car enthusiasts who are always on the go would want something that is both cool and tough, given the challenges of towing and hauling. That is why pickup trucks top their list. For those who prefer a dually, a Dodge Ram 3500 that boasts of dual rear wheels on each side comes as a perfect choice. Its equally robust-looking rigs, fender and grille designs best complement its rugged and muscular guise. But apart from its compelling image, proper care is required to keep your Ram 3500 performing smoothly. Here are a few important maintenance tips that will help keep your dually in top shape:
- Constantly check your wheel alignment.
You don't need to be an automotive expert to know that something is wrong with your wheel alignment. You simply have to feel it. When you feel that your vehicle is wobbly, especially if you are not traversing a rough road; your tire seems flat, or when your car has a problem with staying straight; then it is high time you get it checked for wheel alignment. Passing up on alignment checking can actually lead to serious accidents on the road. And you do not want that to happen.
- Regularly change the motor oil to keep your engine in good shape.
Whether you engage in short or long trips, the motor oil can collect so much dirt that when accumulated causes heightened friction. As you pass up on changing the oil, you will soon realize that other moving parts of your engine get affected. As a result, major repairs and skyrocketing costs will confront you. To avoid these hassles, make sure that the motor oil is checked and replaced between 3,000 to 5,000 miles.
- Do not take your automotive transmissions for granted.
Vehicle transmission is responsible for allowing vehicle motion, hence you get to shift gears, back up using reverse, and go on a neutral mode. All of these are credited to the transmission, as it disengages the drive shaft and the rear wheels. Even when you have the most recent Ram 3500 model, you still need to find time for routine inspection maintenance to extend its lifespan.
- Do not miss out on routine engine check up appointment.
Engine overheating is just one thing that you could experience if you do not religiously follow your vehicle's routine check up appointment. Overheating can actually be very dangerous as it could do permanent damage to your engine and cost you a huge amount for repair or replacement. You can always avoid this by taking your car for routine inspection and maintenance. Once it happens, pull over and shut down your engine immediately. Carefully flip open the hood to let out the steam. However, never remove the cooling system's cap or the radiator cap as you could suffer from extreme scalding. Cold water must never be used to pour on a hot engine. Instead, use room temperature water. If there is no chance to pull over, turn on your heater to allow additional cooling to your overheating engine.
The Dodge Ram 3500: Heavy-duty Heavyweight since 1981
The Dodge Ram was a top heavyweight, literally and figuratively, among all of its other fully-sized pickup truck counterparts. Created to look like the big rig trucks on the road, the Ram exuded an air of machismo that was backed by raw power and excellent performance.
1981: First generation
The first incarnation of the 3500 was the Dodge Ram 350. With its one-ton weight rating, it was the most heavy-duty pickup among the Ram line-up, the others being the half-ton 150 and the three-quarter-ton 250. Variations of the truck included a standard cab with two full-sized doors, a club cab which had a small passenger area in the rear with smaller doors, and the crew cab that included four full-sized doors with a roomy interior in the rear passenger area.
1994: Second generation
The Dodge Ram 3500 first came out in 1994 as part of the Ram’s second generation release. It came with either a four-speed automatic or a five-speed manual transmission. Engine choices included a 5.2 liter V8, an 8.0 liter V10 and a 5.8 liter Cummins turbodiesel engine. The Quad Cab was introduced in 1998 as an improvement to the crew cab body style and included two suicide doors on the back. The steering and suspension system was improved in 2000. The 3500’s Steering and handling were considered to be exceptional at the time while its engine power made it more than capable of towing various heavy loads.
2002: Third generation
The third generation Dodge Ram 3500 came out with only standard cab and Quad Cab body styles. The Mega Cab was introduced in 2006 and was essentially a bigger crew cab. The standard cab had a full sized bed, the Mega Cab had a shorter one while the Quad Cab could’ve had either of them. The 3500 originally came with a 5.7 liter Hemi V8 engine but it was discontinued and replaced with a 5.9 liter Cummins turbodiesel engine. The engine was later upgraded to a more powerful 8.0 liter V10 engine.
2009: Fourth generation
The last Dodge Ram 3500 was powered by a 6.7 liter Cummins turbo diesel inline-six engine and came with either a six-speed automatic or a six-speed manual transmission. The crew cab now came with four forward opening doors while the mega cab body style had a roomier interior at the cost of an even shorter bed.
2011: The Ram 3500
In 2011, Chrysler turned the Ram into an automobile brand specializing in the iconic pickup truck. The name Dodge Ram 3500 was discontinued in favor of the Ram 3500.