New 2013 Ram Pickup: Meaner in Real Life

A review of the 2013 Dodge Ram

scott-burgessby scott-burgess

A vehicle may not make the man, but it does define him, whether he likes it or not.

So just know, if you don’t own something with a trailer hitch in your driveway, you’re a pussy.

A trailer hitch is key to begin an outdoorsman’s right of passage. It connects your vehicle to all of those mechanical toys that turn weekends into speed, exhaust and enough action scenes to fill up a 64 G GoPro SD card. Without a trailer hitch, what will you post to Facebook? Pictures of your cat?

And right now, one of the best things around with a trailer hitch is the 2013 Ram 1500 – a made-over fullsize pickup that provides power, style and space that is rolling into dealerships right now.

Watch the 2013 Ram 1500 First Drive 0-60 MPH Test & Review

Unlike the Ram’s counterparts from Ford and Chevrolet, which tuck leaf springs under their beds, the Ram uses carlike coil springs for its rear suspension, meaning it really does ride better – especially when that bed is empty. For the 2013 model year, the Ram offers an air suspension as well, allowing the driver to adjust the pickup’s height by up to four inches.

Better yet, the Ram hits up to 18 mpg city driving and 25 mpg on the highway – besting any other fullsize pickup by two miles per gallon with Chrysler’s 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. (Of course, there is the venerable 5.7-liter V8 Hemi also available for those in need of an engine that growls like a bear and pulls 11,500 pounds.)

But this pickup, which arrives in more than 100 different configurations, comes loaded with technology, an upgraded interior and those distinctive chiseled lines, including a grille so big it says, “Move over Honda Civic, or die.”

Here are some of the highlights to the new Ram.


Bigger and better: Mostly minor changes to the outgoing model, but Ram gets a slightly bigger grille, a new aluminum hood and continues some of its sweetest features, such as the RamBox, which allows for lockable storage on the bed – this is where that smelly softball gear can stow away. (It also holds ice, which means this can be the ultimate tailgating machine.)


La-Z-Boy meets X-Box: Ram threw every piece of technology at its interior. The big seats are comfortable, plush and feel high end. The instrument gauges and center stack have high-resolution screens and provide the driver with tons of information. You can play apps off the center stack and board games in the center console, which is embarrassingly big.

The second row is equally impressive complete with 110-volt outlet, in floor storage and nearly every other creature comfort.


Naturally, the 395-horsepower 5.7-liter V8 Hemi performs like a champ. But perhaps more impressive, the 3.6-liter V6 offers nearly as equal on road performance. It’s quiet, good off the line and the body holds itself well through any corner.

Most of all, the new Ram would have no problem making a cross-country trek with little weight in the back.

Related: September Auto Sales Crush Expectations

Take away

Pickups may have lost their daily driver appeal for many people because of their legendary poor gas mileage, but the Ram bucks that trend.

It provides lots of space inside and out. And some times, the only vehicle that can do the job is a pickup. Try hauling 10 sheets of plywood with a Toyota Corolla.

And for those worried about their manliness, the Ram comes complete with a trailer hitch.

Is a full-size pickup not your thing? Check out the AOL Autos review of the 2013 Dodge Avenger instead.