Huge American pick-up trucks are a major guilty pleasure here at Only Motors. And they don’t come much more huge or American than the Ram 3500HD.
Everything about it is big. It’s 20 feet long. Over seven feet wide in dually form. The load bed has a payload of nearly 3.5 tons. It can tow just under 16 tons. And its 6.7-litre V8 Cummins diesel engine twists out 1,000lb/ft of torque. 1,000!
As you’d expect, the range is pretty bewildering. There are three engines to choose from – 6.4-litre petrol Hemi V8 and the diesel in 370hp, 875lb/ft or 400hp, 1,000lb/ft forms. All are available with either rear- of four-wheel-drive.
Then there’s a choice of two-door Regular Cab and four-door Crew Cab or Mega Cab. The latter seems to have as much rear seat space as a long-wheelbase Mercedes S-Class. There are two lengths of load bed available, as well.
And, of course, you can have single or dual rear wheels.
There are various trim packages available too, running from hose-out Tradesman to ultra-luxe Limited.
Rear-axle self-levelling suspension keep the chassis and trailer parallel. RamBox storage compartments in the load bed sides keep smaller items safe and secure, and now have 12v sockets. Top-spec models get a 12in infotainment system and surround-view camera. And much else besides, including many driver assists. Shame about the interior materials, though.
The Ram 3500HD is, by all accounts, perfectly pleasant to drive. It’s massively spacious and comfy, cruises quitely and has a relaxed gait. Even towing at its limit, it doesn’t break a sweat. Just don’t try to take corners too enthusiastically.
As ever with American pick-ups, the 3500HD is ridiculously good value. Prices start at $35,095 (£28,000) and top out at $70,940 (£57,000). Though if you want the 1,000lb/ft engine and tow the full 16 tons – we do – you’re looking at a minimum of $54,765 (£44,000).
Such a thing as this would be completely impractical in the UK – it’s simply too big. And, if you wanted to make it work for a living, loading and towing to its full capacity, it might have to be registered as a LGV.
But we’d definitely get one if we emmigrate.
By Graham King