Used Ram 1500

If you’ve ever been in the market for a pre-owned truck, you’ve probably taken a look at a used Ram 1500. While the first introduction of a vehicle with the Ram name occurred in the 1930s, the Dodge Ram pickup truck hit American markets in 1981 to great fanfare. In 2009, however, the brands split, and Ram continued on a solo path of building reliable trucks that dominate the market today. Now a brand under the Stellantis umbrella, Ram is a force to be reckoned with, with innovations throughout the years making these trucks great choices when new and when used.

Does any of this impact the form or function of the Ram 1500? Not at all. Just remember, when looking at trucks on the used market that pre-2010, you'll be looking at the Dodge Ram name, and post-2010, it'll just be Ram. As a stand-alone brand, Ram has narrowed its production focus to a handful of mighty trucks, such as the Ram 1500, 2500, and 3500 Heavy Duty models, and the 3500, 4500, and 5500 Chassis Cab models. If you have the need for a whole lot of trucks, Ram should be at the top of your list of prospects.

A black 2018 used Ram 1500 is shown from the front while driving on a city street.

Ram 1500 Generations

As you shop for a used Ram 1500, you’ll have plenty of options, thanks to the truck’s rich history. The first-generation Ram 1500 made its debut in the early 1980s and continues to the present with the innovative fifth-generation model that boasts all the latest technology and conveniences you can imagine. Here’s a closer look at those generations and what distinguishes one generation from the next.

First Generation (1981-1993)

The 1980s was a period of innovation for Dodge as the automaker added the ram to the hood of its truck to signify strength, ruggedness, and capability. This first-generation Ram 1500 was all of that and more thanks to its modern design that featured sleeker exterior lines and an updated interior outfitted with a bench seat, a redesigned instrument cluster, air conditioning, and power doors and windows. Other amenities included an AM/FM radio with a cassette player as well as the addition of more powerful engines like the Cummins that boosted the truck’s popularity among drivers looking for even more capability and power.

Second Generation (1993-2002)

The second-generation Ram 1500 was an even bigger success than its predecessor, thanks to a complete redesign that attracted a new demographic of drivers. The truck saw the addition of another engine to its multi-engine lineup as well as the Quad Cab configuration that offered doors neatly tucked behind the front doors to offer better accessibility to the back row. These improvements led to further advancements and upgrades, with the truck boasting a new bumper, front grille, and headlamps to usher it into the new millennium.

Third Generation (2002-2008)

New from the ground up, the third-generation Ram 1500 was built with a sturdier frame and offered a better suspension, more powerful engines, and a premium interior that was unheard of in a truck. These improvements made the Ram 1500 more agile and far more capable than ever before, and buyers responded in kind. The widespread success of the third generation prompted several upgrades from Dodge to include the all-new Mega Cab that offered a longer bed and a larger interior cabin that gave drivers the capability of hauling passengers and cargo with ease.

Fourth Generation (2009-2018)

The fourth-generation Ram 1500 marked the split between Dodge and Ram, which allowed Ram to focus all its efforts on producing heavy-hitting trucks. While the split was surprising, it proved successful as Ram released the fourth-generation 1500 along with adding the 2500, 3500, 4500, and 5500 to the lineup. Throughout the decade, the Ram 1500 continuously evolved to meet the demands of drivers who wanted a larger interior cabin, more capability, and better performance. Ram delivered with new options like the four-door crew cab as well as a suite of new technology to keep drivers connected and safe while also making towing heavy loads easier than ever.

Fifth Generation (2019-Present)

The Ram 1500's ongoing success is a breeding ground for innovation, and that’s exactly what you’ll find in the fifth generation of the best-selling truck. Knowing that drivers need to stay connected even when they’re behind the wheel, the fifth-generation 1500 offers cutting-edge technology that allows drivers to seamlessly sync their smartphones with the truck, make phone calls, and navigate the quickest route without taking their hands off the wheel. The newest generation of the Ram 1500 also remains true to its roots as a capable hauler and boasts one of the best payloads and towing capacities in the segment. To add to this, Ram offers enhanced trailering technology that gives drivers all the tools they need to confidently tow heavy equipment, trailers, and more without sacrificing the truck’s remarkable performance or efficiency.

A white 2018 Ram 1500 is angled left in front of a building.

How Will the Ram Truck Perform?

When it comes to reliability and durability, Ram is an obvious choice, with the highest percentage of pickups on the road after 30 years. Ram loyalty is unprecedented, with a relationship between manufacturer and enthusiast that’s practically reciprocal. When Ram drivers couldn’t decide between a completely revamped 2019 model and maintaining the status quo, Ram offered both, with the 1500 Classic keeping things even keel with minor updates and the regular issue 1500 getting a thorough overhaul.

The Ram 1500 is also designed to be exactly the truck a driver wants, so there are seemingly endless options available when picking out a new Ram from the lot. Buying a used Ram 1500 removes some of the anxiety of making a ton of decisions on the fly, but knowing about the options offered helps distinguish one option from another when perusing the used lot.

For example, the 2019 Ram 1500 offered a choice between a Quad Cab for up to six passengers and a Crew Cab with a bigger backseat and four doors. Quad Cab models feature a standard bed measuring 6 feet, 4 inches, while the Crew Cab can be equipped with either a standard bed or a shorter bed measuring 5 feet, 7 inches. Earlier model years include a Regular Cab option, which seats three and offers a choice between the standard bed and a long 8-foot bed.

Then there are the trim levels. Over time, Ram has introduced a wider variety of trims to capture the different needs and nuances of various types of drivers. In 2012, the Ram 1500 was offered in ST, SLT, Sport, and Laramie trims. By 2014, those trims expanded to include Tradesman, HFE, SLT, Sport, Laramie, and Longhorn. In comparison, the 2018 Ram 1500 offered 11 trim options: Tradesman, HFE EcoDiesel, Express, Big Horn/Lone Star, Sport, Night, Lone Star Silver, Laramie, Rebel, Laramie Longhorn, and Limited. This impressive range was pared down to seven for the 2019 Ram: Tradesman, HFE, Big Horn, Rebel, Laramie, Longhorn, and Limited.

Since 2013, the standard engine for the Ram 1500 has been a widely celebrated 3.6L V6 that offers 305 horsepower and 269 lb-ft of torque. An optional 5.7L V8 has been around since the brand split, which in the past five years has been fine tuned to provide 395 horsepower and 410 lb-ft of torque. Over the years, various diesel options have been offered, the most recent being a 2018 3.0L V6 that rumbled with 240 horsepower and 420 lb-ft of torque.

A red 2019 Ram 1500 is shown from the front towing a closed trailer on an open road.

How Much Can the Ram 1500 Tow?

Towing capacity is dependent on a lot of different factors, from body and bed type to trim level, engine power, and even axle ratios. Since Ram drivers have the ability to finetune all of these details in the choices they make to customize their 1500, it’s very likely that no two used Ram 1500s you encounter will have the same towing capacity. The possible towing capacities of a used Ram 1500 can be in the 7,000 lb range or get up to the 12,750 lbs the 2020 model is able to achieve, depending on the model, engine, and year.

Still, there are a few basic guidelines that can help you decide which year of used Ram might meet your needs the best. The 2011 Ram 1500, for example, tops out at 10,050 pounds. Just a few years later, the 2014 Ram 1500 would be able to tow up to 10,450 pounds with the optional 5.7L V8 engine, while the diesel engine option could pull 9,200 pounds, and the standard V6 just 7,450. Following its 2019 facelift, the Ram 1500 can tow up to 12,750 pounds, but only when drivers choose a specific suite of options.

When looking at a used Ram 1500, make no assumptions about towing capacity. Since 2009, Ram has prided itself on being a highly customizable vehicle. It’s rare to find perfect identical twins, so be sure to check on the specific rating for each used Ram you sit in. You’ll also want to check for towing packages, which in recent years include a plethora of driver aids to make towing easier, such as hitch view cameras, integrated brake controls, and trailer-adjustable blind spot alerts, to name a few.

Does the Ram 1500 Have Navigation?

Navigation systems seem like a more recent invention in the automotive world, but what better time to learn more about where you are and where you’re going than behind the wheel of your Ram 1500? Whether you’re heading from job site to job site or checking out a new restaurant, maps and directions are necessary to get us where we’re going. Navigation has been an optional feature on Ram 1500 trucks since 2011, though the technology involved has developed exponentially since then.

In 2011, a Garmin-based unit operated on voice commands. Today, the modern Ram 1500 can be fitted with an optional 12-inch touchscreen infotainment system with a map display that responds to touch and voice controls. Like most vehicles, it’s also compatible with a variety of smartphones for those who prefer the navigation systems provided through Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration or audio cues over Bluetooth input.

The black interior of a 2021 Ram 1500 shows the steering wheel and infotainment screen.

Fifth Generation Technology (2019-Present)

The fifth-generation Ram 1500 is loaded with intuitive technology that works with you and for you to make your job behind the wheel easier, whether you’re cruising the highway or towing a heavy load. This technology isn’t limited to the center touchscreen display or smartphone integration that allows you to access your favorite apps or navigate the quickest route. It extends to safety and driver-assist tools and trailering technology, as well as an all-new multifunction tailgate that makes loading, unloading, and working at the rear of the truck more efficient.

Connectivity and Infotainment

The 2019 redesign of the Ram 1500 adds a suite of state-of-the-art technology that you’ll continue to see on the latest models. This technology is centralized in the award-winning Uconnect system that you’ll find on the 12-inch reconfigurable touchscreen display with split-screen capability. Aside from using multiple apps at once, you can also seamlessly sync your smartphone using Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, navigate the quickest route using voice-controlled entry and enhanced 3D map graphics and enjoy a personalized listening experience via SiriusXM with 360L.

Multifunction Tailgate

You won’t have to worry about efficiently loading and unloading tools, equipment, lumber, and other gear in the bed of the truck, thanks to the addition of the all-new Multifunction Tailgate on the 2021 model. The 1500 is well-equipped with its RamBox cargo management system that allows you to customize the bed for your storage needs. Ram, however, takes the truck to the next level with the Multifunction Tailgate that features 60-40 split doors that swing away to give you easier access to the bed even when you’re towing a trailer. You’ll also find a center bed step that gives you a safe place to stand any time you need to access the rear of the truck.

A popular uses Ram 1500, a black 2019 Ram 1500 is shown from the front parked in front of a barn with cars.

Trailering, Safety, and Driver-Assist

The newest generation of the Ram 1500 puts all the tools you need right at your fingertips. The center touchscreen display is home to the 360-degree Surround View Camera that gives you a birds-eye view of the vehicle. For 2021, Ram adds another enhanced view with the digital rearview mirror that displays on a 9.2-inch LCD monitor that gives you a wider and less obstructed view behind the truck at all times. You can quickly look from the mirror to the all-new, full-color head-up display that you can customize to deliver the information you need in a crisp display on the windshield. You can see your speed, gear, the speed limit, navigational cues, and driver-assist alerts at a glance without taking your eyes from the road.

For 2019, Ram extended the 1500’s safety and driver-assist suite to include over 100 standard and available features like Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop, Go, and Hold as well as LaneSense Lane Departure Warning, ParkSense Parallel/Perpendicular Park, Hill Start Assist, and Forward Collision Warning, many of which are also available as enhanced options. You’ll find these features on the 2021 model as well, in addition to new trailering technology like Trailer Reverse Steering Control, which complements the Trailer Package and helps you guide the trailer right where you want it. Other trailering technology for the 2021 update includes a Trailer Light Check, Trailer Tire Pressure Monitoring, and a wired Trailer Camera Prep Kit.

The Mighty Ram TRX

Ram whetted the appetite of many off-road truck enthusiasts back in 2016 when it revealed a Ram Rebel TRX concept truck in 2016. This was like a Ram 1500 on steroids with higher ground clearance, 37-inch tires, and a wider stance than the standard production model. In addition, this TRX concept truck was powered by a 6.2-liter Supercharged HEMI V8 capable of 575 horsepower. Ram’s idea is to make an apex predator, like everyone’s favorite dinosaur, the T-Rex.

This wasn’t the first appearance of the TRX name. In 2006, Dodge offered a TRX trim on the Dodge Ram 1500 full-size truck, Dodge Ram 2500 and 3500 heavy-duty pickup trucks, and the Dakota midsize truck. The 2006 Dodge Ram 1500 TRX features a choice of rear-wheel or four-wheel drive, 17-inch wheels fitted with off-road tires, and red monotube shock absorbers, while the Dakota TRX has a set of 16-inch wheels with off-road tires, monotube shock absorbers, and a limited slip differential. However, the 2006 Dodge Dakota TRX is a rear-wheel drive truck. The TRX was also offered with a TRX4 Off-Road addition for all models except the Dakota, which added a limited-slip differential, tow hooks, and skid plates. However, this trim was discontinued after 2011.

While Ram truck fans waited patiently, or maybe not so patiently, the engineers at Ram worked to turn the TRX concept into a reality. In the meantime, the focus at Ram shifted to coming up with the fifth generation Ram 1500 model. With the TRX on the backburner, Ram was able to emphasize this new generation of Ram 1500, which made its debut during the 2019 model year. With that completed, Ram finally turned its attention to the TRX.

The Ram 1500 TRX finally made it to dealers in time for the 2021 model year. This powerful, purpose-built off-road truck combines aggressive looks, exceptional performance, off-road gear, and a stylish and tech-forward interior. This truck represents the most advanced and capable off-road truck ever made by Ram, with more standard features than ever before.

The first thing you are going to notice about the Ram 1500 TRX is its rugged exterior. Featured in a Crew Cab only, the TRX has been given a track that measures 6-inches wider than a standard Ram 1500. The trim-exclusive grille features RAM in block letters offset by a pair of LED headlights. The hood scoop will improve air intake, while the set of four tow hooks is not just for show. They could help you get out of a tight spot when off-roading.

Ram carries these aggressive good looks over to the interior of the Ram 1500 TRX. The standard cloth and vinyl seats are striking and come with bolsters. The gorgeous black interior has plenty of room for up to 5 passengers and comes with red or Graphite accents. Heated leather seats are available as an option. Every model of the Ram 1500 TRX features the Uconnect system with a 12-inch touchscreen. You will not only be able to stream all your favorite music through Apple CarPlay and Android Auto but also get crucial off-road and performance information. A flat-bottom steering wheel with mounted aluminum paddles shifters will give you exceptional handling, as well as the ability to better control the TRX’s 8-speed automatic transmission.

The Ram 1500 TRX runs on a very muscular 6.2-liter Supercharged HEMI “Hellcat” V8. This engine comes paired with a TorqueFlite 8-speed automatic transmission and is capable of delivering up to 702 horsepower at 6100 rpm and 650 lb-ft of torque at 4800 rpm. One key to this engine’s performance is its generous air intake with a high-performance air induction system. As a result, this truck is capable of going from 0 to 60 miles per hour in a blistering 4.5 seconds.

One other thing about the Ram 1500 TRX: it is ready to go off-roading right out of the dealership. The Ram 1500 TRX comes with a standard 4x4 drivetrain, with Bilstein Black Hawk e2 shocks featuring active damping on its superior suspension system. It also has an electronic locking rear differential to prevent slippage when out on the trail. This truck rides on 35-inch Goodyear Wrangler Territory All-Terrain tires wrapped around 18-inch wheels to give you 11.8 inches of exceptional ground clearance. You can even add Mopar accessories like a bed-mounted spare tire, RamBar light bar, and aluminum rock rails to better suit the trails you intend to tackle with your Ram 1500 TRX.

There are eight different drive modes on the Ram 1500 TRX. Snow mode will give you excellent traction to handle winter weather conditions. Mud/sand mode handles torque distribution to reduce wheel slippage, improving traction on the TRX. Rock mode helps the truck shift into an extra-low gear ratio for better rock climbing so you can better control your descent. Baja mode sets the Bilstein suspension system to full damping so that you can ride your TRX almost like a dune buggy. There is a custom mode that allows you to set your own torque split, suspension ride, and steering feel. Finally, sport mode is ideal when you get back onto the highway for the ride home after a long day of fun on the trail. As a result, the Ram 1500 TRX is ready to hit the off-road running!

HEMIS & Cummins engines

Ram has set its trucks apart from the competition by featuring some of the strongest, most efficient, and most advanced engines. The two that stand out are the HEMI V8 gas engines and the Cummins Turbo Diesel offered on the Ram 1500 trucks.


The current generation of the Ram 1500 features an available 5.7-liter HEMI V8 gas engine. Nicknamed the Eagle, this HEMI engine can be added with an eTorque mild hybrid system that replaces the standard alternator on the engine, boosting engine efficiency. The engine block is made of deep-skirt cast iron with aluminum alloy heads and uses variable cam timing and sequential multiport electronic returnless fuel injection to provide 395 horsepower at 5600 rpm and 410 lb-ft of torque at 3950 rpm. This liquid-cooled V8 features 16 valves in a pushrod-operated overhead valve configuration.

The Ram 1500 TRX features a 6.2-liter Supercharged HEMI Hellcat V8. This also features a deep-skirt cast-iron block with aluminum alloy heads but is capable of a jaw-dropping 702 horsepower at 6100 rpm and 650 lb-ft of torque at 4800 rpm.

The biggest HEMI engine available on Ram trucks is the 6.4-liter HEMI V8 standard on the Ram 2500 and 3500 heavy-duty truck models. Just like the engine featured on the Ram 1500, it features variable cam timing and sequential multiport electronic returnless fuel injection. However, this is a more powerful engine, capable of producing up to 410 horsepower at 5600 rpm and 429 lb-ft of torque at 4000 rpm.

Cummins Turbo Diesel

The 6.7-liter Cummins Turbo Diesel I-6 engine available on the Ram 2500 and 3500 is a marvel of engineering. It uses a turbocharger to boost performance without adversely affecting fuel economy. The engine block is composed of compacted graphite iron with cast-iron cylinder heads. It features electronic high-pressure common rail fuel injection, typical of most turbo-diesel engines. But, other turbo-diesels can’t match the 370 horsepower and 850 lb-ft of torque provided by this Cummins Turbo-Diesel. This engine also has a dual overhead camshaft configuration, so there are a total of 24 valves, giving you unrivaled performance.

Cummins has been partnering with Ram to provide diesel engines on Ram trucks, and the high output version of the 6.7-liter Cummins Turbo Diesel I-6 available on the Ram 3500 is a celebration of this union. This provides you with 420 horsepower at 2800 rpm and 1,075 lb-ft of torque at 1800 rpm. That torque figure is an industry leader, outpacing the amount produced by any other turbo-diesel available on the class of heavy-duty trucks.

A popular used Ram 1500, a white 2021 Ram 1500 is shown from the front parked in a field with cows.

Why You Need to Make Orange Coast CJDRF Your Ram Dealer

Just as there are dozens of reasons to buy a used Ram 1500, there are plenty of reasons to shop with Orange Coast Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram FIAT. We’ve been in the automotive business for over three decades, and with each year, we finetune our process to deliver the best customer experience available. We’re here to replace the stress of the traditional car-buying experience with excitement and joy because it’s not every day that you get behind the wheel of a capable workhorse like the Ram 1500.

Our hard work hasn’t gone unnoticed, thanks to thousands of customers who are now part of the Orange Coast family. We also earned the prestigious FCA Customer First Award, which reflects the work we’ve put into our facilities, performance measures, training, employee surveys, and processes. These factors are the foundation of our unique customer experience that starts the moment you drive onto the lot.

Once you’re here, you’ll find that our focus is entirely on you. We know that your time is valuable, and that’s why we’ll do everything possible to help you narrow down your selection. The moment you say “yes” to the Ram 1500 of your dreams, the clock starts, and we promise to get you in and out of the dealership in 90 minutes. If we can’t keep that promise, we’ll give you $100 to use at our service department. That’s how much we believe in our process!

Our satisfaction guarantee is another great reason to shop with us. You can try on clothes and return them if you don’t like them, so why doesn’t the same philosophy apply to vehicles? We know that sometimes, you get home only to realize that you’re not satisfied with your vehicle. If that happens, just return the vehicle within 72 hours or 250 miles. We’ll give you a full refund with no questions asked as part of our love it or leave it policy.

Orange Coast Chrysler Jeep® Dodge Ram 33.6778229, -117.9198198.