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Pickup Trucks: 2018 Ram 3500 Improves Towing and Torque Capability




Though we're still waiting for Ram to announce when its heavy-duty pickup trucks will get a redesign — the rumor mill puts that at 2019 — that doesn't mean Ram is sitting on its laurels. For model-year 2018, the Ram 3500 will get a few upgrades to its Cummins diesel engine and fifth-wheel hitch design, improving both towing and torque figures.

The turbo-diesel 6.7-liter inline-six-cylinder Cummins gets higher boost limits thanks to a variable-geometry turbo and an increase in flow rate through the fuel-delivery system that adds an additional 30 pounds-feet of torque, pushing the engine up to 930 pounds-feet of twist. This beats the turbo-diesel 6.7-liter V-8 Power Stroke found in the Ford Super Duty trucks by 5 pounds-feet and the turbo-diesel 6.6-liter V-8 Duramax in the Chevrolet Silverado 3500 and GMC Sierra 3500 by 20 pounds-feet.

Out back, the Ram 3500 also will feature a new hitch design. Ram didn't provide specifics about those changes, but it did provide us with a new tow rating for fifth-wheel trailers: 30,000 pounds. The hitch will be available as an upfit package for the 3500 or as a stand-alone part for $1,395.

How does this stack up against the Ford F-350 and the GM HD twins? The Ford is rated to tow more, but with the caveat is that the fifth-wheel hitch is rated to a maximum of only 27,500 pounds, which puts a limit on its overall capability. The Chevrolet and GMC top out at 23,300 pounds for third place.

The 2018 Ram 3500 will be available at dealerships later in August.

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