The most notable change in the 2020 Ram 1500 is a new powertrain, a 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6 with 260 horsepower and 480 pound-feet of torque. Otherwise, the only changes are aesthetic tweaks to packages and exterior colors following last year's redesign.
Choosing Your RAM 1500
The Ram 1500 comes in six trims: Tradesman, Big Horn, Laramie, Rebel, Laramie Longhorn, and Limited. Prices start at $33,590 including destination for a Tradesman and continue up to $55,110 for a Limited.
The Ram 1500 is available with four engines, none of which have fewer than six cylinders. The base engine is standard across the range, but each other option is available on every trim. The base 3.6-liter V6 and one variant of the 5.7-liter V8 use a mild hybrid system Ram calls "eTorque," which helps boost fuel economy.
|Engine Type||Horsepower||Torque||Fuel Economy (Combined)|
|3.6L eTorque V6||305 hp||269 lb-ft||23 mpg|
|3.0L Turbodiesel V6||260 hp||480 lb-ft||Not Yet Rated|
|5.7L V8||395 hp||410 lb-ft||17 mpg|
|5.7L eTorque V8||395 hp||410 lb-ft||19 mpg|
All engines are paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission, and all-wheel drive is a $3,500 option across the board.
Although the two V8 engines technically share power specs, the mild hybrid system adds an available 130 lb-ft of torque, giving it the best towing capacity at 12,750 pounds. The turbodiesel nearly keeps up, however, with a max towing capacity of 12,560 pounds.
Passenger and Cargo Capacity
The Ram 1500 comes with two cab options: Quad Cab or Crew Cab. Both seat up to six, but the Crew Cab gives substantially more room to rear-seat passengers. The Crew Cab becomes standard starting at the Rebel trim.
Two bed lengths are available as well: a 5-foot-7-inch bed or a 6-foot-4-inch option. The Quad Cab is only available with the long box, but the Crew Cab can be had with either.
The Ram 1500 has a good safety record. The NHTSA gave the Crew Cab variant a five-star overall safety rating, and the IIHS named it a Top Safety Pick Plus. The Quad Cab earned four stars from the NHTSA and didn't earn a designation from the IIHS.
Active safety features like adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist, and blind-spot monitoring are available, but only bundled in packages and only on the top four trims. The Rebel trim gains access to these packages for 2020, but Tradesman and Big Horn buyers are still out of luck.
The Ram 1500 Tradesman starts with a 5-inch touchscreen running Ram’s Uconnect infotainment system. It’s basic, but it does have Bluetooth and voice commands.
Most buyers will step up to the 8.4-inch touchscreen available on Big Horn models (and standard on the rest), which also adds Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. An even larger 12-inch touchscreen is an option.
Aimed primarily at commercial buyers, the Tradesman trim is as basic as it gets. Cloth seats and hard plastics are the standard, although the Tradesman does get keyless entry and a rearview camera.
Most of the packages are equally basic, with a few upgrades for things like bench seats and body color bumpers. More interesting to utilitarians is a spray-in bedliner, which can be had in either the Bed Utility Group ($845) or the Tradesman Group (also $845, with a Class IV receiver hitch).
The Big Horn is the first mainstream model, and it looks the part with 18-inch wheels and chrome bumpers. A leather steering wheel and fog lights come standard, too.
The Big Horn adds a good deal of option flexibility. The 8.4-inch infotainment system is available, but only as part of either Equipment Group. Level 1 ($1,200) adds niceties like power-folding heated mirrors, adjustable lumbar support, and an eight-way power driver’s seat, while Level 2 ($2,400) includes remote start and automatic climate control.
For a sleek all-black look, the simple Night Edition ($1,895) turns everything black and adds in a few power features.
The Laramie trim gets the larger infotainment screen as standard equipment. The driver gets a larger display and memory settings, and the front row is heated and ventilated. Leather upholstery and a nine-speaker audio system are also included.
The Laramie trim opens up the optional safety equipment, including adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist, and a surround-view camera. It’s all part of the Advanced Safety Group for $1,695.
To get blind-spot monitoring, buyers will need to add one or both Equipment Groups ($1,695 for Level 1 or $3,595 for Level 2), which also include luxury features like rain-sensing wipers and a remote tailgate.
If the 8.4-inch screen isn’t large enough, a 12-inch unit is available as a standalone option for $2,095.
The Ram 1500 Rebel is aimed at off-road performance, although it’s not quite as focused as specialists like the Ford Raptor. It's available exclusively with all-wheel drive, the Crew Cab, and 5-foot-7-inch bed. The Rebel also gets all-terrain tires, a raised suspension, and an electronic locking rear differential. LED lights and tow hooks are included for good measure.
The Rebel now has access to some active safety tech in the form of the Safety and Convenience Group ($895), but it doesn’t get some of the Laramie’s features, like heated seats. Getting those requires the $2,000 Level 1 Equipment Group.
The Laramie Longhorn gets a few luxury upgrades, including 20-inch wheels, semi-aniline leather, wood trim, and LED lights. But the Longhorn’s real draw is its Western charm, and it offers a few unique exterior colors and styling elements.
It can become a proper luxury truck with the Longhorn Level 1 Equipment Group ($3,895), which adds the 12-inch infotainment screen, wireless charging, a 19-speaker audio system, and more.
The king of the 1500 hill, the Limited trim gets nearly all possible features. This means the largest infotainment screen, blind-spot monitoring, power running boards, an upgraded audio system, and an active suspension.
The active safety tech still isn’t standard though – it remains part of the Active Safety Group ($1,695) or the Limited Level 1 Equipment Group ($2,995).
The 2020 Ram 1500 Big Horn may satisfy many buyers, but the best value for our money is the Laramie. It has all the features we look for in a luxury truck, and it slides in under $50,000 even with the V8, Crew Cab, and all-wheel drive.