Offered in a dizzying array of trims, the 2018 Ram 2500 does its best to keep up with the modern competition. Updated technology and styling help, but the 2500 still has mighty opponents in the Ford and GM lines.
What's New for 2018
The 2018 Ram 2500 brings new technology and a few cosmetic updates. There’s a new ultra-luxury version called the Limited Tungsten, and all models get updated vehicle telemetry trackers. The 8.4-inch display gets upgrades in resolution, plus 4G LTE connectivity and more smartphone compatibility. All models now come standard with a rearview camera. The Sport trim gets some styling tweaks, and all models add an exterior switch for the LED lighting in the bed.
Choosing Your RAM 2500
The Ram 2500 lineup offers an immense amount of customizability, starting under the hood. The base engine is a 5.7-liter V8 with 383 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque. This engine can be recalibrated to run on compressed natural gas (CNG) at a cost of $11,000, but power remains the same. For $500, buyers can upgrade to a 6.4-liter V8 producing 410 hp and 429 lb-ft. These are the only available gas engines, and both are available only with a six-speed automatic transmission.
The third engine is a 6.7-liter Cummins diesel producing 385 hp and a huge 900 lb-ft of torque. On the lowest three trims the price is $9,200, and above that it drops to $8,700. The diesel comes with a six-speed manual transmission, but the automatic is available as a no-cost option. With the right options, the Cummins is rated to nearly 18,000 pounds of towing capacity. The EPA doesn’t require mileage ratings for trucks this size, but expect it to be poor.
There are four cab/bed options: a regular cab with an eight foot bed, a crew cab with either a six foot four inch or an eight foot bed, and an extra-large “Mega Cab” with a six foot four inch bed. Cab options and pricing depend on trim. All models are available with four-wheel drive, but the cost ranges from $2800 to $3200 depending on trim. There are seven trim options available: Tradesman, SLT, Big Horn, Power Wagon, and Limited.
The Ram 2500 can be a ranching workhorse or a luxury cruiser (or both), depending on how you pick your options. The SLT is easily the most balanced choice, here, particularly if you're liberal with the optional extras. If you're planning to spend a lot of time in the mud, the Power Wagon is worth the upgrade – it hasn't met a piece of trail it can't handle.