Pros

  • Immense skill set and ability.
  • Physically and mechanically robust.
  • Unparalleled towing capacity.
  • Genuine off-roading chops.
  • More comfortable and practical the majority of other dual-cab Utes.
  • The image it inspires.

Cons

  • Nightmare to park in the majority of metropolitan areas.
  • Some examples have been abused and may suffer from mechanical issues.
  • Built quality leaves a little to be desired.
  • To large and heavy for some off-road tracks and excursions.
  • The image it inspires.

Many consumers just cannot see the point of the RAM 1500, assuming they are utter rubbish and the only things they are good at are towing heavy things and compensating for their owners lack of self esteem, but this is simply the wrong attitude to have.

Very few other vehicles...

Publish: December 16, 2022

The massive (for anywhere outside the US) RAM 1500 of the DS generation first appeared in the United Staes back in 2009 and after near yearly updates, are technically still a current model. However here in Australia, the majority of DS 1500’s will span from around 2017 to 2021.

Speaking of the US, in its native market the 1500 is available across more than 12 variants, which begs the question, how do they decide which to buy because here in Australia, we have had only two to choose from, the Express and Laramie, with a light dusting of special editions to keep things interesting.

Also depending on the year and variant, these trim specs are available in either quad cab or the longer rear doored and extra second row seat space, yet a shorter tub sized Crew Cab form.

It’s important to know that many of the 1500’s here on Aussie shores have arrived via grey importers but RAM Trucks Australia is the only company that have imported and distributed the official export-spec left-hand-drive new vehicles directly from the Ram factory in the US, and then, using hundreds of locally sourced parts, converts them to right-hand drive.

Even though many out there despise even the concept of these big American pickups, the reality is, very few other vehicles can do what these can do. We’re talking immense towing ability, genuine off-roading chops, huge practicality not to mention the whole X-factor that these come with.

Yes other vehicles can do one

The massive (for anywhere outside the US) RAM 1500 of the DS generation first appeared in the United Staes back in 2009 and after near yearly updates, are technically still a current model. However here in Australia, the majority of DS 1500’s will span from around 2017 to 2021.

Speaking of the US, in its native market the 1500 is available across more than 12 variants, which begs the question, how do they decide which to buy because here in Australia, we have had only two to choose from, the Express and Laramie, with a light dusting of special editions to keep things interesting.

Also depending on the year and variant, these trim specs are available in either quad cab or the longer rear doored and extra second row seat space, yet a shorter tub sized Crew Cab form.

It’s important to know that many of the 1500’s here on Aussie shores have arrived via grey importers but RAM Trucks Australia is the only company that have imported and distributed the official export-spec left-hand-drive new vehicles directly from the Ram factory in the US, and then, using hundreds of locally sourced parts, converts them to right-hand drive.

Even though many out there despise even the concept of these big American pickups, the reality is, very few other vehicles can do what these can do. We’re talking immense towing ability, genuine off-roading chops, huge practicality not to mention the whole X-factor that these come with.

Yes other vehicles can do one or two of these things in isolation, but to encompass all of them, it pretty much has to be something like a RAM 1500.

However in saying that, they do tend to take up an offensive amount of space on the road, American cars here in Australia have a pretty horrendous reputation when it comes to quality and reliability and if ever a vehicle screamed, I don’t care about the environment, it might very well be the RAM 1500.

The massive (for anywhere outside the US) RAM 1500 of the DS generation first appeared in the United Staes back in 2009 and after near yearly updates, are technically still a current model. However here in Australia, the majority of DS 1500’s will span from around 2017 to 2021.

Speaking of the US, in its native market the 1500 is available across more than 12 variants, which begs the question, how do they decide which to buy because here in Australia, we have had only two to choose from, the Express and Laramie, with a light dusting of special editions to keep things interesting.

Also depending on the year and variant, these trim specs are available in either quad cab or the longer rear doored and extra second row seat space, yet a shorter tub sized Crew Cab form.

It’s important to know that many of the 1500’s here on Aussie shores have arrived via grey importers but RAM Trucks Australia is the only company that have imported and distributed the official export-spec left-hand-drive new vehicles directly from the Ram factory in the US, and then, using hundreds of locally sourced parts, converts them to right-hand drive.

Even though many out there despise even the concept of these big American pickups, the reality is, very few other vehicles can do what these can do. We’re talking immense towing ability, genuine off-roading chops, huge practicality not to mention the whole X-factor that these come with.

Yes other vehicles can do one or two of these things in isolation, but to encompass all of them, it pretty much has to be something like a RAM 1500.

However in saying that, they do tend to take up an offensive amount of space on the road, American cars here in Australia have a pretty horrendous reputation when it comes to quality and reliability and if ever a vehicle screamed, I don’t care about the environment, it might very well be the RAM 1500.

In terms of common problems with the exterior, there have been quite a few reports that the rear windows can leak in heavy rain or when going through an automatic car wash. This is mainly due to poorly fitted seals, but it should be an easy and fairly inexpensive fix.

The sliding rear window is also not without its gremlins.

The locking Mechanisms for the tailgate/tray can be potentially faulty, meaning they’ll either get stuck or just fall open.

In earlier models, there are reports of decay and corrosion around the rear wheel arches, both the underside and tray.

Chrome bumpers are known to show rust relatively easily.

Inside the U-Connect infotainment system is known to occasionally glitch out overtime, plus the Bluetooth connectivity, reversing camera and audio are known to have faults. However this should be easily fixed with a software update.

There are a few reports of cruise control systems having issues as well, there are cases of it not engaging at all, not staying on or even rare occasions of not being cancellable once it is engaged.

Mechanically, in Australia, over 95% of RAM 1500 are powered by the (petrol) 5.7-litre Hemi V8 and drive all 4 wheels through an 8 speed auto. The remaining few are powered by the VM Motori V6 diesel which can also be found in a host of various Jeeps, Chryslers & even Maserati’s.

The diesel power plant is an ok engine, although it does have a few weaknesses but considering it

In terms of common problems with the exterior, there have been quite a few reports that the rear windows can leak in heavy rain or when going through an automatic car wash. This is mainly due to poorly fitted seals, but it should be an easy and fairly inexpensive fix.

The sliding rear window is also not without its gremlins.

The locking Mechanisms for the tailgate/tray can be potentially faulty, meaning they’ll either get stuck or just fall open.

In earlier models, there are reports of decay and corrosion around the rear wheel arches, both the underside and tray.

Chrome bumpers are known to show rust relatively easily.

Inside the U-Connect infotainment system is known to occasionally glitch out overtime, plus the Bluetooth connectivity, reversing camera and audio are known to have faults. However this should be easily fixed with a software update.

There are a few reports of cruise control systems having issues as well, there are cases of it not engaging at all, not staying on or even rare occasions of not being cancellable once it is engaged.

Mechanically, in Australia, over 95% of RAM 1500 are powered by the (petrol) 5.7-litre Hemi V8 and drive all 4 wheels through an 8 speed auto. The remaining few are powered by the VM Motori V6 diesel which can also be found in a host of various Jeeps, Chryslers & even Maserati’s.

The diesel power plant is an ok engine, although it does have a few weaknesses but considering it is in so few of these in Australia, we’re just focusing on the Hemi V8 for now.

That Hemi V8 is widely considered to be very reliable. It’s in a variety of different makes and models and supercharged in some applications making ridiculous and reliable horsepower.

There are though, in the earlier models mainly, numerous reports of camshaft and lifter failures, and this has been attributed to a design flaw relating to the angle of the lifters and oil supply complications.

The other cause of a ticking sound may actually be something entirely different. Be careful it’s not misdiagnosed as a lifter noise because another common (and thankfully much cheaper) issue, is exhaust manifold leaks from broken studs and warped manifolds. It too is usually much more obvious on a cold start up.

The Chrysler Torque flight 8 transmissions is a version of the ZF 8HP70 (which is in a while host of different cars from various manufactures).

They’re considered as very reliable transmission with no one single serious problem that causes common catastrophic failures. But there are some safety recalls on the earlier versions so check that they’re up to date. Transmission servicing intervals are every 100,00km but if you want it to last (especially if you’re towing) do it every 50,000km

Other than that, is just random electrical, suspension & drivetrain problems that you see in all cars, but unfortunately, just slightly more frequently than in other cars.

In terms of common problems with the exterior, there have been quite a few reports that the rear windows can leak in heavy rain or when going through an automatic car wash. This is mainly due to poorly fitted seals, but it should be an easy and fairly inexpensive fix.

The sliding rear window is also not without its gremlins.

The locking Mechanisms for the tailgate/tray can be potentially faulty, meaning they’ll either get stuck or just fall open.

In earlier models, there are reports of decay and corrosion around the rear wheel arches, both the underside and tray.

Chrome bumpers are known to show rust relatively easily.

Inside the U-Connect infotainment system is known to occasionally glitch out overtime, plus the Bluetooth connectivity, reversing camera and audio are known to have faults. However this should be easily fixed with a software update.

There are a few reports of cruise control systems having issues as well, there are cases of it not engaging at all, not staying on or even rare occasions of not being cancellable once it is engaged.

Mechanically, in Australia, over 95% of RAM 1500 are powered by the (petrol) 5.7-litre Hemi V8 and drive all 4 wheels through an 8 speed auto. The remaining few are powered by the VM Motori V6 diesel which can also be found in a host of various Jeeps, Chryslers & even Maserati’s.

The diesel power plant is an ok engine, although it does have a few weaknesses but considering it is in so few of these in Australia, we’re just focusing on the Hemi V8 for now.

That Hemi V8 is widely considered to be very reliable. It’s in a variety of different makes and models and supercharged in some applications making ridiculous and reliable horsepower.

There are though, in the earlier models mainly, numerous reports of camshaft and lifter failures, and this has been attributed to a design flaw relating to the angle of the lifters and oil supply complications.

The other cause of a ticking sound may actually be something entirely different. Be careful it’s not misdiagnosed as a lifter noise because another common (and thankfully much cheaper) issue, is exhaust manifold leaks from broken studs and warped manifolds. It too is usually much more obvious on a cold start up.

The Chrysler Torque flight 8 transmissions is a version of the ZF 8HP70 (which is in a while host of different cars from various manufactures).

They’re considered as very reliable transmission with no one single serious problem that causes common catastrophic failures. But there are some safety recalls on the earlier versions so check that they’re up to date. Transmission servicing intervals are every 100,00km but if you want it to last (especially if you’re towing) do it every 50,000km

Other than that, is just random electrical, suspension & drivetrain problems that you see in all cars, but unfortunately, just slightly more frequently than in other cars.

Body style:

  • 4-door dual cab ute

Engines:

  • 3.0 litre V6 turbo diesel (Laramie)
  • 5.7 litre HEMI V8 petrol (Express, Express with RamBox, Laramie, Laramie with RamBox, Warlock, Warlock with RamBox)

Power:

  • 179kW – 3.0 litre V6 turbo diesel
  • 291kW – 5.7 litre HEMI V8 petrol

Torque:

  • 569Nm – 3.0 litre V6 turbo diesel
  • 556Nm – 5.7 litre HEMI V8 petrol

Transmission & drivetrains:

  • 8-speed automatic, four-wheel drive (4×4)

Fuel consumption:

  • 11.9 – 12.2L/100km

Length:

  • 5817 – 5850mm

Width:

  • 2017 – 2097mm

Height:

  • 1983 – 2006mm

Kerb weight:

  • 2605-2630kg

Towing (braked/unbraked):

  • 4500kg/750kg

Body style:

  • 4-door dual cab ute

Engines:

  • 3.0 litre V6 turbo diesel (Laramie)
  • 5.7 litre HEMI V8 petrol (Express, Express with RamBox, Laramie, Laramie with RamBox, Warlock, Warlock with RamBox)

Power:

  • 179kW – 3.0 litre V6 turbo diesel
  • 291kW – 5.7 litre HEMI V8 petrol

Torque:

  • 569Nm – 3.0 litre V6 turbo diesel
  • 556Nm – 5.7 litre HEMI V8 petrol

Transmission & drivetrains:

  • 8-speed automatic, four-wheel drive (4×4)

Fuel consumption:

  • 11.9 – 12.2L/100km

Length:

  • 5817 – 5850mm

Width:

  • 2017 – 2097mm

Height:

  • 1983 – 2006mm

Kerb weight:

  • 2605-2630kg

Towing (braked/unbraked):

  • 4500kg/750kg

Body style:

  • 4-door dual cab ute

Engines:

  • 3.0 litre V6 turbo diesel (Laramie)
  • 5.7 litre HEMI V8 petrol (Express, Express with RamBox, Laramie, Laramie with RamBox, Warlock, Warlock with RamBox)

Power:

  • 179kW – 3.0 litre V6 turbo diesel
  • 291kW – 5.7 litre HEMI V8 petrol

Torque:

  • 569Nm – 3.0 litre V6 turbo diesel
  • 556Nm – 5.7 litre HEMI V8 petrol

Transmission & drivetrains:

  • 8-speed automatic, four-wheel drive (4×4)

Fuel consumption:

  • 11.9 – 12.2L/100km

Length:

  • 5817 – 5850mm

Width:

  • 2017 – 2097mm

Height:

  • 1983 – 2006mm

Kerb weight:

  • 2605-2630kg

Towing (braked/unbraked):

  • 4500kg/750kg

Warranty:

3 years/100,000kms

Servicing:

12 months/12,000kms

Model range, pricing & features

Express

Price when new: $79,950 - $100,450

Price used: $70,000 - $130,000

The Express was the entry-level model of the 1500 range and was available with the 5.7 litre HEMI V8 mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission.

Differences to the Warlock and Laramie models included a smaller infotainment screen (5.0-inches vs 8.4-inches), manual air conditioning and cloth upholstery.

Express models could be fitted with the RamBox Cargo Management System which added built-in cargo lighting, cargo bed rails with adjustable tie-downs and cargo bed extended and divider.

Standard Features:

  • 20-inch alloy wheels
  • Body coloured bumper bars
  • Body coloured side mirrors
  • Rear mudflaps
  • Dual exhaust
  • Driver and front passenger airbags
  • Front side airbags
  • Full-length curtain airbags
  • 3-point (lap sash) seatbelt for all occupants
  • Height adjustable seatbelts for driver and front passenger
  • Child seat anchor points
  • Headrests for all occupants
  • Anti-lock braking system (ABS)
  • Electronic brakeforce distribution (EBD)
  • Hill holder
  • Trailer sway
  • Tyre pressure monitoring system (TPMS)
  • Rear parking sensors
  • Rear vision mirror
  • Heated side mirrors
  • Electric windows – front and rear with driver’s and front passenger’s auto up/down function
  • Cruise control
  • Projector headlights
  • Front fog lights
  • Intermittent wipers
  • Central locking
  • Tachometer
  • Fuel gauge
  • Trip computer
  • Manual handbrake
  • Power steering
  • Manual air conditioning
  • Cloth upholstery
  • 5.0-inch touchscreen with Uconnect infotainment system
  • 6-speaker sound system
  • AM/FM radio
  • Bluetooth connectivity – phone and audio streaming
  • Front cup holders
  • Glovebox
  • Vanity mirror for driver and front passenger

2019 updates:

  • Trailer brake controller
  • Reversing camera

Warlock

Price when new: $104,450 - $111,950

Price used: $100,000 - $150,000

The Warlock model was introduced in 2020, and added more aggressive styling cues in addition to some features from the Laramie top-of-the-range model.

Additional features included blacked out front grille and 20-inch semi-gloss darkened alloy wheels, Rambox cargo system, keyless entry, push start, leather upholstery, dual-zone climate control and the 8.4-inch version of the Uconnect infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Additional Features:

  • 20-inch semi-gloss alloy wheels
  • Blacked out front grille
  • Factory-gilled suspension lift
  • Rambox cargo system
  • Keyless start
  • Push start
  • Leather upholstery
  • Dual-zone climate control
  • 8.4-inch touchscreen with Uconnect infotainment system
  • Apple CarPlay and Android Auto

Laramie

Price when new: $99,950 - $109,950

Price used: $78,000 - $150,000

The Laramie is the top of the range model and featured a chrome styling pack, chrome alloy wheels, front and rear parking sensors, reverse camera, electrically folding side mirrors, memory function for mirrors and front seats; heated and ventilated front seats, leather upholstery and the 8.4-inch version of the Uconnect infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Additional Features:

  • 20-inch chrome alloy wheels
  • Chrome grille and side steps
  • Front and rear parking sensors
  • Reversing camera
  • Automatic headlights
  • Rain sensing wipers
  • Eletrically folding side mirrors
  • Electrochromatic rear-view mirror
  • Power-adjustable pedals
  • Keyless start
  • Push start
  • Dual-zone climate control
  • Rear air vents
  • Electrically adjustable front seats
  • Memory function for mirrors and driver’s seat adjustment
  • Heated and ventilated front seats
  • Heated rear seats
  • Leather upholstery
  • Heated steering wheel
  • 8.4-inch touchscreen with Uconnect infotainment system
  • 9-speaker sound system with subwoofer
  • Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
  • Satellite navigation
  • Rear 12-volt outlets

Many consumers just cannot see the point of the RAM 1500, assuming they are utter rubbish and the only things they are good at are towing heavy things and compensating for their owners lack of self esteem, but this is simply the wrong attitude to have.

Very few other vehicles have such a breadth of talents like the RAM 1500 and when compared to the dual-cab utes we are generally more familiar with here in Australia, the big American is simply more comfortable, more practical, is significantly better for towing, is arguably more enjoyable to drive

Plus that HEMI V8 adds a genuine soul to its character, but don’t get us wrong, the Ram 1500 is far from perfect.

Parking in any metro area is a complete nightmare, it’s expensive to own and run and people unfortunately will make assumptions about the sort of person you are.

However, if you genuinely require the RAM 1500’s immense set of skills, and you’re completely aware of what you’re getting yourself into, and you can find an example that ticks all the boxes, it’s a yes from us, a cautious yes but a yes nonetheless.

Many consumers just cannot see the point of the RAM 1500, assuming they are utter rubbish and the only things they are good at are towing heavy things and compensating for their owners lack of self esteem, but this is simply the wrong attitude to have.

Very few other vehicles have such a breadth of talents like the RAM 1500 and when compared to the dual-cab utes we are generally more familiar with here in Australia, the big American is simply more comfortable, more practical, is significantly better for towing, is arguably more enjoyable to drive

Plus that HEMI V8 adds a genuine soul to its character, but don’t get us wrong, the Ram 1500 is far from perfect.

Parking in any metro area is a complete nightmare, it’s expensive to own and run and people unfortunately will make assumptions about the sort of person you are.

However, if you genuinely require the RAM 1500’s immense set of skills, and you’re completely aware of what you’re getting yourself into, and you can find an example that ticks all the boxes, it’s a yes from us, a cautious yes but a yes nonetheless.

Many consumers just cannot see the point of the RAM 1500, assuming they are utter rubbish and the only things they are good at are towing heavy things and compensating for their owners lack of self esteem, but this is simply the wrong attitude to have.

Very few other vehicles have such a breadth of talents like the RAM 1500 and when compared to the dual-cab utes we are generally more familiar with here in Australia, the big American is simply more comfortable, more practical, is significantly better for towing, is arguably more enjoyable to drive

Plus that HEMI V8 adds a genuine soul to its character, but don’t get us wrong, the Ram 1500 is far from perfect.

Parking in any metro area is a complete nightmare, it’s expensive to own and run and people unfortunately will make assumptions about the sort of person you are.

However, if you genuinely require the RAM 1500’s immense set of skills, and you’re completely aware of what you’re getting yourself into, and you can find an example that ticks all the boxes, it’s a yes from us, a cautious yes but a yes nonetheless.

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Disclaimer

Please note that pricing information is subject to fluctuations in the automotive market.

Information correct as of December 16, 2021.

The advice provided on this website is general advice only. It has been prepared without taking into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on this advice, you should consider the appropriateness of the advice, having regard to your own objectives, financial situation and needs.

Read our full terms and conditions here.

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