A cheaper 3500 that does not require a truck licence to drive and a RamBox option on the 2500 headline the changes to the 2017 model year RAM line-up.
The new entry-level 3500 undercuts the existing version by $2600 at $143,900 before on-road costs, while pricing remains the same on both the 2500 and 3500 Laramie models at $139,500 and $146,500 respectively.
RAM has dropped the maximum payload on the 3500 from 1713 kilograms to 894kgs so it can be driven on a standard car licence while maximum towing weight remains the same at 6171kgs.
The de-rated 3500 – which can be operated with a regular car driver’s licence – is aimed at creating a version of the Ram 3500 Laramie that is ideal for use with fifth wheel and gooseneck towing according to RAM Australia general manager Alex Stewart.
“This is thanks to all the existing RAM towing advantages combined with the leaf spring suspension in the 3500, compared to coil set-up in the 2500, to produce a strong and stable towing platform,” he said.
An optional RamBox storage system for 2500 models also form part of the MY 2017 changes and will add to the cost by $3400, bringing the price up to $142,900.
Having convenient, secure storage for your gear makes RamBox one of the greatest innovations that you’ll find on a pick-up truck.
The new storage spaces are embedded into the guards along the rear flanks of the tray and measure 152cm long with a 90-degree opening lid and 243 litre volume each, as well as being weatherproof and lockable.
A wide variety of objects can be stored away according to Ram including a set of golf clubs, helmets, kayak paddles, fishing rods and even chainsaws. Drain holes allow the space to be used as an impromptu esky, a feature sure to be well received at Ute-musters all around the country.
An adjustable and lockable bed divider system in the rear tray comes as part of the RamBox option, enabling compartments to be customised to a certain size and load separated from each other.
The RamBox system also brings adjustable tie down points via a sliding rail cargo system.
Ram boasts that its in-house storage system is a “flexible, easily accessible, versatile and secure storage space and, at the same time adds a load area bed divider”.
The brand expects the majority of customers buying a 2500 truck will opt for the RamBox storage system, with Mr Stewart saying its versatility is a boon for the brand.
“Having convenient, secure storage for your gear – whether it is work site tools, sporting equipment or ice cold slabs of refreshments for the team – makes RamBox one of the greatest innovations that you’ll find on a pick-up truck,” he said.
Ram has also upgraded its hands-free phone system with a second microphone saying, “the change has been made to ensure that the front seat passenger has the same voice clarity as the driver, despite the width of the interior of the Ram truck”.
Both the 2500 and 3500 models feature 18-inch wheels fitted with new 275/70 tyres in an effort to reduce road noise.
A 6.7-litre Cummins turbo-diesel straight-six engine, producing 276kW of power and a whopping 1084Nm of torque propels both Ram pick-ups.
All that grunt is fed through a six-speed automatic transmission while there is an exhaust brake to make life easier for the regular brakes while carrying heavy loads.
Standard features across the range include a sunroof, heated steering wheel, dual-zone climate control, nine-speaker audio system, ventilated front seats and a cargo tray almost two metres long.
2017 Ram 2500 list pricing
Ram 2500 Laramie – automatic – $139,500
Ram 2500 Laramie with RamBoxes – automatic – $142,900
2017 Ram 3500 list pricing
Ram 3500 Laramie - car licence – automatic – $143,900
Ram 3500 Laramie - truck licence – automatic – $146,500