RAM 1500 Classic vs. RAM 1500

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Automotive Editor

Based out of the Washington, D.C. area, Joel Patel is an automotive journalist that hails from Northern Virginia. His work has been featured on various automotive outlets, including Autoweek, Digital Trends, and Autoblog. When not writing about cars, Joel enjoys trying new foods, wrenching on his car, and watching horror movies. 

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, Automotive Editor - December 19, 2018

RAM may have come out with an all-new 1500, but the automaker still continues to sell the outgoing model, which is called the RAM 1500 Classic, alongside the all-new pickup. It's an interesting decision that gives buyers that are interested in getting into a pickup from RAM more choices. Is the all-new RAM 1500 worth the extra money over the 1500 Classic?

See a side-by-side comparison of the 1500 Classic & 1500 »

What the RAM 1500 Gets Right

Full-size pickup trucks like the RAM 1500 and 1500 Classic are all about towing. With a new powertrain, the RAM 1500 is more capable than ever. When properly equipped, the new RAM 1500 can tow up to 12,750 pounds and has a maximum payload capacity of 2,300 pounds. The RAM 1500 Classic falls behind with a maximum towing capacity of 10,760 pounds and a payload capacity of 1,880 pounds.

RAM upgraded the 1500's powertrain for the 2019 model year, and the new pickup truck now comes with a 3.6-liter V6 that features an eTorque mild-hybrid system. While power remains the same as the RAM 1500 Classic, fuel economy is greatly improved. The most fuel-efficient RAM 1500 achieves an EPA-estimated 20 miles per gallon city, 25 mpg highway, and 22 combined. The RAM 1500 Classic only gets 17/25/20 mpg (city/highway/combined) at its best.

Another big difference between the two models is the level of luxury in the new RAM 1500. The new pickup truck can be fitted with dual-zone automatic climate control, premium leather-trimmed bucket seats, heated front and rear seats, ventilated front seats, a 19-speaker Harman Kardon audio system, a 12-inch touchscreen, air suspension, a wireless charging pad, and power running boards.

What the RAM 1500 Classic Gets Right

The biggest thing the RAM 1500 Classic has going for it is its affordable price tag. The entry-level 1500 Classic starts at $29,090 including destination. Pricing for the base 1500 starts at $33,490. That's a difference of $4,400 in favor of the 1500 Classic.

At the time of writing, the RAM 1500 is available in quad cab and crew cab configurations. Drivers seeking a basic pickup truck with only two doors or a regular cab configuration that's easier to drive in urban areas will gravitate toward the 1500 Classic.

Is the All-New Model Worth the Money?

The new RAM 1500 is leaps above the old RAM 1500 Classic. While the all-new model costs a lot more money, it's well worth it. The RAM 1500 Classic, though, still has its place in the market as a capable, versatile, and heavy-duty pickup truck. If all you're looking for is a work truck that can tow over 10,000 pounds, the Ram 1500 Classic is still a strong choice.

Our Verdict: RAM 1500

If you can swing the extra money, the new RAM 1500 is worth every penny. With more standard features, a more high-tech engine, and even more towing and payload capacity than before, the RAM 1500 is a better pickup truck than ever. The ability to tack on high-end luxury features is also something that makes it the better option.

Take a closer look at the RAM 1500 Classic »

Take a closer look at the RAM 1500 »

Side-by-side comparison of features, pricing, photos and more!

, Automotive Editor

Based out of the Washington, D.C. area, Joel Patel is an automotive journalist that hails from Northern Virginia. His work has been featured on various automotive outlets, including Autoweek, Digital Trends, and Autoblog. When not writing about cars, Joel enjoys trying new foods, wrenching on his car, and watching horror movies. 

Follow On: Twitter

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