Fuel Efficiency

Mike: Every time you come to the pump, you’re spending more of your family’s budget. In effect, gas prices control what you can and cannot do. That’s what efficiency is all about.

So when we set out to build the 2013 Ram 1500, we knew what we had to do to succeed: improve efficiency without sacrificing capability.

First, we made the frame lighter. We used lighter, stiffer, high-strength steel, which allowed us to cut weight without losing any strength.

Next, we decided to put in the powerful, yet efficient Pentastar V6, paired with the Torque-Flight 8, 8-speed transmission. This transmission is a game-changer. You won’t find it in any other light duty truck.

In our pursuit for efficiency there are less obvious things. One is thermal management.

The engine and transmission oil is most efficient at 190 degrees. But unless the truck is operating at max capability, the oil never gets that warm.

Thermal management heats the oil, so even during everyday use, it reaches 190 degrees.

Then, there’s electric power steering. It allows for refined steering feels for both parking and highway driving. It also improves powertrain efficiency, by eliminating the need to turn a traditional hydraulic power steering pump.

And lastly, there’s new stop/start technology. When you come to a complete stop, the engine shuts down, starting again only when you take your foot off the brake pedal. Obviously, that’s much more efficient.

With all that and more, this truck now gets a best-in-class 25 miles per gallon. So that it can do what it has to do. But it lets you do more of what you want to do. It’s the best of both worlds for anyone who wants to drive it.

SUPER: Guts. Glory. Ram.

Test and Refine

Cast: Elizabeth Krear

Elizabeth: Perfection. It's not a destination. It's a journey. Along the way, you challenge yourself. You repeat what worked and change what didn't. You test, and refine, and repeat. That's the philosophy behind quality at Ram Trucks.

The pursuit of quality is a continuing process. It all comes down to eliminating flaws, turning weakness into strength. How do you do it? Simple: design the best truck you can imagine, then push it to its limits.
First, there's level testing: that's where our engineers try to break the truck. To push it beyond what a normal owner would ever do.

There are frame twists, like this.

And then there's the trailer-towing test.

We call this one the soup bowl.

Then we do extensive consumer testing. And we don't just get any consumers. We recruit what we call the 95th percentile. The group of people who are most abusive to one or another component of the truck.

For example, my daughter is in the 95th percentile of door slammers.

The new 2013 Ram 1500 is our best truck yet.

We ask every single person who buys a truck one simple question: would you recommend your new Ram Truck to a friend?

Our scores began high and they're only going getting higher.

Test. Refine… succeed.


Cast: Drew Regan

Drew: When we set out to build a safer vehicle, this is the essence of what we do. When there's a crash, my job is to protect the passenger.

When the vehicle stops suddenly, the passengers may collide with some parts of the truck's interior. So we try to minimize the effects of that crash.

Our system is made up of two parts, the structure and the restraints. The structure is the steel that makes up the body and the frame.

The restraint system is the seat belts and the air bag. They work together to lessen the effect of the crash on the body.

The structure of the Ram starts right here with the tow hooks, which are designed to deform under impact loading. Those tow hooks are tied to the hydroformed rail tips, which are connected to the full vehicle frame underneath the structural cab.

A great feature for the new 2013 Ram 1500 is the seat-side airbag.

The seat-side airbag comes out during a side impact from this section of the seat. At the same time, a side airbag curtain deploys from the ceiling. Ram was the first truck to make a side impact curtain standard.

As engineers, we deal with moving bodies. And when a vehicle comes to a sudden stop, it's our job to make sure that energy is not transferred to the occupants.

So no matter what else goes on with the truck, we never compromise on security.

Because the most important cargo is the moving bodies inside the cabin.


Ryan: Guys who drive Ram trucks, they’re working guys. They’re used to the weather, the rain, the sleet, the snow.

My job is to create an atmosphere to make these guys feel comfortable. I always tell my team to imagine if you were outside working, 100-degree temperatures, 10 hours a day. What would you want the interior of your truck to feel like?

So here are some of the materials we put in the 2013 Ram 1500. As you go up through the model lineup, what you’re going to notice is that we have that much more differentiation between the models. So almost every single price class has different finishes in terms of materials and paint finishes. What it really starts to do is set up a uniqueness throughout the entire lineup. So we’ve improved materials on the doors. We’ve improved the seats. So you get to things like our seating cloth. So we actually have two new seating materials for the SLT. It’s got a nice touch and feel to the hand, but it’s still robust enough. We’ve even got something pretty cool on our Sport where through the perf you actually have a little bit of color coming through. So when you see the perf holes, you actually look through and see some of that accent color. You get into some finishes like our vents, and our Sport’s more of that city truck, you’ve got black chrome, you’ve got nice high gloss black finishes. One of the really cool things is on our new 2013 Longhorn we’ve added real wood. Real wood is actually more of an open pore real wood, which is really cool. The wood is actually from a European source. The trees are used as fence posts, so they wrap barbed wire fence around them. Over the years, that barbed wire gets engulfed into the wood. The wood then starts to swirl around and create this burling effect. So as you can see through the lineup, there’s tons of stuff out here, we’ve got a lot of uniqueness in the interior. So with that said, let’s go see how this looks in the truck.

I’ve worked on cars too, but this is really different. You always have to remember that this is a truck. Big giant knobs; easy to use. Not too many swoopy curves on the interior. Let’s start with the doors. That’s the first thing you’re going to notice.

We’ve wrapped them in leather; we’ve even got real wood.

I’m absolutely obsessed with these doors.

Whenever you design a truck interior, you have to compliment that truck’s mechanical nature.

This is especially true when you put in the Torque-Flight-8, 8-speed transmission. Because it requires electric shifting, as opposed to mechanical linkage, we couldn’t use a conventional shifter. So here’s what we came up with.

Totally different from any other truck. Big, bold, intuitive. 4 positions. You don’t even have to look. You can just feel it. Big trucks have had these types of controls forever. We’re the first pick-up truck to do it.

We put a lot of work into the interior. We listened to our customers. It’s a sophisticated atmosphere in an extremely functional space.

But no matter how sophisticated we get, we never forget that it’s still a truck.

That makes the new 2013 Ram 1500 the perfect place for a little peace and quiet.

Air Power

SUPER: Optimize without compromise. That’s strength evolved.
SUPER: Air power
SUPER: Active grille shutters
SUPER: Air suspension
SUPER: Wheel-to-wheel tubular side steps

Dave: Work truck. Sports car. Why bring them together? This is the epitome of hard work. This is about moving through the air with ease. Our goal was to do both in one vehicle. Capability and aerodynamics. The new 2013 Ram 1500.

Trucks are built for work, so they’re not inherently aerodynamic. To enhance the way this truck flows through the air, we started with the logical place: the front end. We made the lower air dam out of a very flexible, durable material. That allowed us to increase the aerodynamic performance by placing it closer to the road without risking damage from being driven into a curb, or when driven off road.

The lower air dam is only the beginning. Take a look at this. These are active grille shutters. They allow the truck to be both capable and efficient, depending on the situation. Let me show you how. The grille on the new 2013 Ram 1500 is enormous. It has to be. When you’re towing, the engine generates a lot of heat. So you need a giant influx of air to cool it. So here, the active grille shutters are open. But when you’re just cruising down the highway, the engine is plenty cool. So all that air flowing in is nothing but a drag. Here, the shutters close automatically and the air flows around the truck, rather than into it. This is much more aerodynamic. This technology is common on big rigs, but we’re the first pickup to have it.

See this? You wouldn’t think it helps with aerodynamics but it does. We originally extended the tubular side steps to provide easier access to the truck bed. But we found through testing that by enhancing the shape, we could actually improve the airflow around the truck.

Sports cars are one thing, they’re built low to the ground to increase aerodynamics. A truck can’t always be that low. So often you need better ground clearance for capability. So we asked ourselves, how can we do both? The answer is air suspension. You get the ground clearance you need, when you need it. But at highway speeds, the air suspension lowers the truck automatically. So the truck flows through the air more like a sports car.

We completely changed the aerodynamics of this truck, without ever changing the sheet metal. The result is that we have excellent aerodynamics in a truck that works harder than ever.

Lets get back on the track.

SUPER: Guts. Glory. Ram.

A Truck For Every Job

SUPER: Torque-Flite 8, 8 speed transmission
SUPER: Pentastar V6

Mike Raymond: Every truck has a job to do. Whether for work or the weekend, you need to be able to count on it. The new 2013 Ram 1500 does it all.

It’s capable. It’s reliable. And it’s efficient.

This truck was already capable. We knew that. Our goal was to add what the customer was asking for: efficiency. That starts with the engine: the Pentastar V6.

We had used the Pentastar in other vehicles. It could tow, it could haul, and it was efficient.

The Pentastar is 94 lbs lighter than the old 3.7L.

Then we added the TorqueFlite-Eight 8-speed transmission, which took efficiency to a whole new level. When it comes to efficiency, 8 gears are much more effective than 4. This is the only light duty truck, which offers an 8-speed.

With the combination of the Pentastar V6 and the TorqueFlite-Eight 8-speed transmission, you can tow larger loads, haul more weight, and be more efficient.

There isn’t much the new 2013 Ram 1500 can’t handle.

Your truck always has a job to do, and you’re the guy who’s always happy to do it.

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