2017 RAM 1500 Rebel – Test Drive, Review, Ratings, Specs

SAMSUNG CSCFitting a Big Trucks in a Tight Society

By now, everyone including their grandmas are aware of vehicle emissions and its negative impact on both the climate and your wallet. The big-size pickup truck certainly doesn’t portray much of an idea of “green is clean” initiative either. But there is hope to move towards that direction with the RAM 1500. The RAM 1500 owns the spotlight light in terms of fuel economy, achieving a very respectable 29 miles per gallon (MPG). But that’s only possible if you opt for the exclusive 3.0-liter EcoDisel V-6 engine. The RAM 1500 engine configuration options also offer a 3.6 liter Pentastar V-6 engine delivering 305 horsepower and 267 lb-ft of torque, or the upper tier 5.7 liter HEMIV-8 with Variable valve timing (VVT) producing 395 horsepower and 410 lb.-ft of torque.

Picking a model that’s best for you is where things might get tricky. There are 11 models of the RAM 1500 to choose with its price tag ranges from $25,895 for the basic ST model all the way up to the Laramie Limited priced at $55,445. For 2017, RAM keeps things simple by adding more standard features that include the Uconnect 8.4″ infotainment system, automatic dual-zone temperature control, anti-spin differential, security alarm, rear backup camera and park assist.

Off-Road Styling

The Rebel and the Laramie Limited tunes its styling for the younger crowd by departing from its more classical truck looks with an all-new blacked-out Rebel grille design and off-road style front bumper that’s been powder-coated to death for durability. It even sits on an all-new 17″ aluminum wheel design and comes with front tow-hooks.

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Interior quality is graded in the “as-is” category. The ultra spacious cabin is decorated with basic black plastic panels with a basic visual appeal. The seats are also stitched with thick-grade cloth material, but feels as if it can attract dirt and mud easily. With that said, it is disappointing to point out that leather seat options are not available in the exclusive Rebel model.

Truck Performance

Standard on the Rebel and Laramie Limited model is the Class-Exclusive Active-Level Four-Corner Air suspension that benefits from maintaining ride height regardless of load, with the ability to manually adjust the ride height manually by up to 2 inches, making it easier for loading and offloading. The ride height is also automatically adjusted on high-way speeds to improve aerodynamics. While this all sounds good on paper, the ride quality does compromise a bit with its lack of cushioning on harsh bumps that are more capable with conventional multi-link coil spring suspensions.

Our tester comes configured with a 5.7L HEMI VVT V8 that is capable of producing 395 horsepower and 410 lb-ft of torque. Acceleration feels abundant even on highway lane entries and merges, but gear shifts through the 0-speed TorqueFlite automatic transmission could do some more refining.  Fuel economy does take a hit with the V8 engine though. Our road test scores a lower grade of 22 miles per gallon (MPG) on average.

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Fuel efficiency is helped by the ability to shift between two-wheel and four-wheel drive on the fly without having to stop the vehicle. There is also an additional 4-LO setting with a 2.64:! gear reduction ratio for added power and grip. Towing is primarily what this truck is built for, and its specs don’t disappoint. The RAM 1500 tows up to 10,640 lbs and can haul a payload of up to 1,880 pounds. Standard on the RAM 1500 also comes standard with a 4 and 7 pin wiring harness for integrated Class IV hitch receiver and Trailer Brake Control system.

The Rebel brings in a young and aggressive stigma to the RAM 1500 lineup with virtually no compromise. The bolder and more modern looks of the Rebel does limit some of the purchase options available though. Leather seats are not available in the Rebel, and you’re stuck with air suspensions whether you like it or not. Still, the price tag of the Rebel sits nicely in the middle of the spectrum at $47,445 that includes all the core features found in the Laramie truck models. The Laramie Limited model offers the same modern looks with higher level luxury amenities including leather seats, and that sits at the upper end of the price spectrum at $55,445.

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Specifications

  • Vehicle : 2017 Ram 1500
  • Model : RAM 1500 Rebel
  • Vehicle Type : Crew Cab Pickup Truck
  • Seating Capacity : 2+3
  • Engine : 5.7L Hemi V8
  • Horsepower: 395 hp, 410 lb-ft
  • Transmission :  8-speed TorqueFlie Automatic
  • Price as tested: $69,020

Pros

  • Bold and aggressive styling
  • Spacious Interior
  • Ride height adjustable with air coil suspensions
  • HEMI V8 engine produces plenty of power

Cons

  • Lack of quality found in the cabin space
  • Ride quality compromised by air suspensions
  • Poor fuel efficiency rating with V8 Engine