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6 things first-time truck buyers will appreciate about the 2019 Ram 1500

2019 Ram 1500 Laramie

Your grandfather was a Ford man. Your dad is a Chevy guy. You got their hand-me-downs. The slight digs at the Thanksgiving dinner table are the stuff your family still talks about. Now it’s your turn. Which full size truck should you buy as your first new truck?

The redesigned 2019 Ram 1500 offers a number of features and technologies that buyers used to either driving sedans, SUVs, or older model trucks will enjoy.

1.) The Ram 1500 is easy to drive. There’s no doubt the 1500 is a full-size truck but its appropriately weighted steering wheel and excellent maneuverability make the transition between driving a three-row SUV and a full-size truck easier.

2.) The 1500 is priced well. The lowest grade of the 2019 truck, the Quad Tradesman 4×2, has a starting MSRP of $31,695 in the U.S. and the model tops out with the Crew Limited 4×4 with an extended bed coming in at $57,890. With available options boxes checked, the price of a fully loaded 1500 can approach $70,000. The 2018 Ford F-150 and 2018 Chevrolet Silverado start lower and top out higher.

3.) It’s conveniently connected. The Ram 1500 performs all the basic functions of a pickup truck well. It also does all the high-tech connectivity and infotainment functions usually reserved for luxury sedans and SUVs.

The 1500 can come equipped with a 12-inch fully configurable touchscreen display that looks like a tablet embedded in the center stack. There are redundant climate control buttons for drivers who wish to not use the screen for those functions.

There are five USB ports, three of which interact with the UConnect system interface.

The new Ram 1500 is the first vehicle equipped with SiriusXM with 360L, a combination satellite and on-demand streaming platform that comes free for one year with new vehicle purchase on equipped trucks.

Providing the sound is a Harman Kardon audio system with 19 speakers and a 10-inch subwoofer.

4.) The ride is smooth. The last generation of Ram trucks were noted for their smooth ride but this generation takes it up a notch. Equipped with shocks on all four corners of the truck, the equipment works together to assess driving conditions and give the proper amount of damping required. The truck is also equipped with an air suspension at the corners, which has load-leveling capability. Still, you feel connected to the road.

5.) The Ram 1500 isn’t the gas guzzler you may think it is. It achieves virtually the same EPA-estimated fuel economy as the 2019 Chevrolet Silverado with a comparable engine size- 17 mpg combined. It also is as fuel efficient as the Dodge Durango with a 5.7-liter engine and all-wheel drive but does better than the 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT and 2018 Bentley Bentagya.

6.) It reeks of family-friendliness. With inches-more legroom in the second row than the previous generation, the Ram 1500 is downright spacious. Kids and their backpacks are no match for the flat floor area of the back seat and even teens have plenty of room for their growing long legs. With just the front row occupied, it’s not a stretch to imagine an entire Costco run fit in the cabin. There are 20 liters total of additional storage space below the floor in two Ram Bins.

Interior materials, including leather and real wood, appear durable and should hold up well to a family’s wear and tear. Improved rear air vent capacity allows for 50-percent more air to flow through the cabin than in the previous generation. Rear seat passengers can enjoy up to eight-degrees of slide-recline in their seats.

The truck also comes with more than 100 standard and available safety and security features, like the Chrysler Pacifica, like blind-spot monitoring, lane departure warning with torque assist, and rear cross-traffic alert. The tailgate can be opened using passive gestures.

The 2019 Ram 1500 is on sale now at a FCA dealership near you.

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Written by Eileen Falkenberg-Hull

Eileen is the writer of the nationally syndicated column Automotive Minute in The Business Journals, which explores the automotive industry focusing on news, reviews, and interviews. She loves finding out about the business strategy, design, and drivability of vehicles. Eileen is a contributor to U.S. News & World Report Best Cars.

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