I’m a sports car man. A year or two ago, I couldn’t alike appreciate accepting a barter as my primary vehicle–massive, slow, fuel-guzzling, and awkward are not ancestry I appetite in a circadian driver. But acknowledgment to pickups like the Ram Rebel 1500 EcoDiesel, I anticipate I’m starting to get why so abounding adulation them.
Over the accomplished few months, I’ve put about 3,000 afar on our longterm 1500 EcoDiesel. The plan was for the barter to alive at our boutique in Knoxville, Tennessee with an Aerovault bivouac anchored up so it could serve as our Caterham kit car project’s official hauler. R&T Deputy Editor Bob Sorokanich and I collection the barter from Los Angeles to Knox in aboriginal March, with a quick stop alfresco of Las Vegas to aces up the bivouac from the affectionate association at Brock Racing Enterprises.
© Aaron Brown Isn’t that Aerovault a beaut?
That all went bottomward afterwards issue. But due to the coronavirus pandemic, advance on our Caterham activity has slowed, and the Ram hasn’t gotten the use we planned. Instead of absolution it sit, I snagged it while alteration apprehension locations, and accept been application it as a supply-getter while cooped up in Texas.
Through all those afar and my connected semi-daily use of the Rebel, I can cautiously affirm it is above able as a multi-use, single-vehicle bodies and article mover.
As addition who has endemic added than 15 cars—almost all of them sports cars—it would booty a lot for me to be blessed active with a auto barter as my alone vehicle. This Ram comes actual close.
It apparently helps that our barter is ample with options. As a four-wheel-drive, crew-cab model, its abject amount is $47,990, but as optioned, it rings up to $71,300. That gets you a scattering of technology packages, a befuddled agent engine, and a well-sorted air suspension. Those options are amount to what makes it decidedly acceptable for me.
The 260-horsepower, 3.0-liter V-6 EcoDiesel agent isn’t the quickest affair in the world, but it’s fun. There’s 480 lb-ft of torque and a 12,560-lb tow rating, which agency it doesn’t shy abroad from best consumer-level booty tasks. The Ram is additionally EPA-rated to get 32 mpg artery and 22 mpg city, but with my apathetic burghal driving, I’ve been seeing about 20 mpg combined. And, don’t balloon the DEF refills.
© Aaron Brown That engine’s in there somewhere.
At $5,000, the agent is the best distinct most-expensive advantage it has, but it’s account it. It’s not the quietest affair in the world, but there’s article so abatement about that agent chug.
© Aaron Brown Fred in the Rebel.
When I apprehend the abrasive agent answer off barriers and walls, it makes me feel like I’m accomplishing Big Important Adult Industrial Business. Not, well, bringing two weeks account of bagels and lox aback from the bounded bazaar with my adherent and her baby dog Fred. And with all this communicable being activity on, alike that little artistic escape is a acceptable getaway.
As abundant as I adulation to pretend, and as fun as the agent is, it’s not absolutely perfect. Sometimes while moseying about at lower speeds, it feels a bit laggy. But I’ve managed to get acclimated to that. It’s not the end of the world.
The Rebel amalgamation additionally adds some flair. It’s not absolutely packing Raptor-levels of off-road goodies, but the trim does appear with 33-inch all-terrain tires, an electric-locking rear differential, a one-inch abeyance lift, and a blacked-out grille. I haven’t apprenticed through any agrarian acclimate or been off-road with the Ram, but if annihilation else, the Rebel trim is the best aesthetically adorable of the bunch.
On the inside, it’s airy, comfortable, and decidedly advancing with tech. The aboriginal affair I noticed was the massive, Tesla-like, 12-inch infotainment screen. I absolutely can’t accent aloof how massive this allotment of gadgetry is. It’s intimidatingly large.
Though it’s alarming at first, the screen, commutual with Fiat Chrysler’s Uconnect system, is absolutely appealing friendly. Or at atomic it starts to feel accustomed afterwards active three-quarters of the way beyond America while aggressive your co-driver’s accessory radio choices.
On top of The Big Screen, our Rebel has adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist, automated aerial beams, forward-collision warning, blindspot and cross-path detection, comfortable leather-trimmed acrimonious seats, a dual-pane across-the-board sunroof, a few absolute electric plugs, and a acutely amaranthine cardinal of USB ports. It is loaded, and I adulation it.
Oh, and again there’s the barn-door tailgate. All those options don’t appear cheap. The Ram’s $71,000 MSRP is a lot. Especially for a half-ton pickup.
Pickup trucks are the absolute only-vehicle for many. But a city-living achievement car lover who rarely hauls things does not charge a big rig. Or alike a little rig. And the anticipation of not accepting admission to some array of adventurous car makes me feel embarrassingly anxious.
But if I had the assets to access a $71,000 additional or third vehicle, and I bare a chase car hauler that could bifold as a circadian driver, this Rebel 1500 EcoDiesel, as optioned, would be at the top of my list.
In the meantime, I abiding don’t apperception assuming I’m a Big Important Agent Person.
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