2021 Ram 1500 TRX review: Glorious overkill

    Put 700 horsepower in absolutely anything, and also you’re certain to have a superb time.
    Andrew Krok/Roadshow
    Back when the Dodge Hellcat lineup was first unveiled, I joked that it was solely a matter of time earlier than that hulking supercharged V8 made its approach into each automobile its mum or dad firm builds. While my hopes of a Chrysler 200 Hellcat have been sorely dashed, that whining lump did ultimately discover a unusual bedfellow within the Ram 1500 pickup. The result’s the 2021 Ram 1500 TRX, and whereas it defies frequent sense, I’ve been having approach an excessive amount of enjoyable to note.

    LikeGoes like spitOver-the-top aestheticsGreat cabin tech

    Don’t LikeStarts at $70,000Has a consuming downside

    Modern pickup vans already appear like they’re chiseled from strong blocks of testosterone, but someway the TRX manages to amplify that even additional. The Ram is nearly 2 inches wider, about 2.5 inches taller and has 0.3 inches extra floor clearance than the Blue Oval’s Baja big-boy, the F-150 Raptor. In my quaint, quiet neighborhood, the TRX looms massive on my driveway — effectively, totally on my driveway, since it is so broad that the passenger-side tires bleed over onto my neighbor’s garden. Not that my neighbor would dare say something, as a result of the fats fenders and copious black accents make the truck appear like it is able to beat you up only for taking a look at it the flawed approach.When it involves functionality, the Raptor and TRX are fairly evenly matched, however the Ram squeaks forward by slim margins. The TRX can tow 8,100 kilos, a hundo greater than the Raptor can muster, and it will haul 1,310 kilos within the mattress, 110 greater than the Ford. Ram’s additionally obtained the benefit in breakover and departure angles (21.9 and 23.5 levels, respectively) albeit by a number of tenths of a level, whereas strategy angle is equally matched at 30.2 levels. Both vans additionally boast a foot or extra of suspension journey entrance and rear, which issues much less on the road than it does within the filth.

    Even although I do know this truck is loads succesful, as our personal Antuan Goodwin proved by truly leaping the factor, odds are a lot of them won’t ever see that type of intense off-road motion. But it isn’t just like the TRX does not shine as a storage queen, both. In truth, it is one of many dumbest and most grin-inducing experiences I’ve had in months, and it left me wanting extra each time.Under the hood is identical 6.2-liter supercharged Hemi V8 as each different Hellcat-based product on the market, and on this occasion, it is tuned to provide 702 horsepower and 650 pound-feet of torque. When I jam my proper foot into the firewall, the usual four-wheel-drive system pushes me ahead with stunning haste — a 4.5-second jaunt to 60 mph is not fast within the grand scheme of issues, however when it is in a crew cab pickup that weighs nearly 6,400 kilos, it rattling close to looks like I’m rewriting mechanical physics. Combine that just about unnatural feeling of pace with the loud supercharger whine and the basso profundo roar coming from the exhaust pipes out again, and it makes for fairly the partaking sensory expertise. The solely approach you may miss a niche in site visitors is by overshooting it. The V8 can drone a bit at freeway speeds, however individuals in it for the sound and the fury most likely will not care.

    The trip high quality is… truck-ish. With as much as 14 inches of suspension journey and meaty 325/65R18 Goodyear Wrangler all-terrain tires, issues are on the softer facet, with the same old body-on-frame actions which might be half and parcel with all pickups. But the TRX is much from a discombobulated mess, due to Bilstein adaptive dampers on every nook. In its normal Auto setting, the truck is fairly effectively balanced, and throwing it into Sport provides some stiffness whereas boosting throttle response. Modes for snow, towing, rocks, mud and sand and Baja-style dune-blasting are all normal, too. Braking is surprisingly good, given the factor’s heft, but it surely’s laborious to not be keenly conscious of the momentum I’m carrying always.

    Just ensure you’re good at staying in your lane, as a result of the TRX is roughly the scale of the lane, so there’s not loads of house for deviation.The solely factor that really sucks concerning the TRX is its gasoline economic system, which, as you would possibly count on, is pathetic. The EPA could not do higher than 10 miles per gallon metropolis and 14 mpg freeway — and even reaching these numbers requires a lightness of foot that flies within the face of the Hemi mantra. After a pair hundred miles of city and freeway driving, I barely break into double digits. Yikes.That Hemi is thirsty — and laborious to {photograph}, contemplating how excessive off the bottom it is mounted.
    Andrew Krok/Roadshow
    The newest iteration of Ram 1500 boasts probably the greatest and most luxurious interiors within the light-duty pickup phase, particularly in comparison with the Raptor, which nonetheless makes use of Ford’s last-generation physique. My TRX tester is totally kitted out, due to a $7,920 gear bundle that features ventilated leather-based entrance seats, leather-based dashboard and door-panel trim, adjustable pedals, a heated steering wheel, the entire 9 yards. Whether it is for individuals or for stuff, there’s a ton of house in right here. The rear seats are extraordinarily spacious, which helps for hauling issues that you do not need within the mattress, whereas door and armrest pockets swallow up the whole lot from purses to tablets and no matter different tchotchkes I carry alongside. The 12-volt outlet atop the dashboard is a pleasant little contact for followers of radar detectors, and there are ten USB ports (5 USB-A, 5 USB-C) scattered concerning the inside, along with a wi-fi machine charger slightly below the infotainment display screen.Ram’s mum or dad firm continues to enhance its already-great cabin tech, and the Ram TRX provides a number of the latest, flashiest equipment on supply. Standard gear features a honkin’ 12-inch portrait infotainment show operating the automaker’s Uconnect system, which boasts Android Auto, Apple CarPlay and Performance Pages, which permit me to choose and select settings for various elements of the automobile, along with monitoring issues like wheel articulation and steering angle. I like that the display screen can present a number of corners of the system directly, whether or not it is audio, navigation or Sirius-based climate maps. The controls are massive and legible, making for straightforward use with minimal distraction. A big show within the gauge cluster is able to displaying nearly the whole lot the primary display screen can, with dead-simple steering wheel controls to cycle by means of tire pressures, transmission temperatures and a wide range of different info, all wrapped on this rugged-looking design that retains the beefy TRX theme alive.UConnect matches like a glove on this portrait configuration. Then once more, when does not it?
    Andrew Krok/Roadshow
    Some harder-core automobiles eschew the same old panoply of lively and passive security programs, however many of the good things is offered within the TRX. In addition to plain forward-collision warning, my tester has a $995 bundle that provides emergency braking with pedestrian and bike owner detection, adaptive cruise management with stop-and-go capabilities and lane-keeping help. The $7,920 gear bundle additionally throws parking sensors into the combination, as a result of making an attempt to suit this factor right into a typical parking house takes a little bit extra effort than standard.Stellantis’ high-horsepower choices are usually not low-cost, and the 2021 Ram TRX is not any exception. Its beginning value of $71,690 (together with $1,695 for vacation spot) leapfrogs the Challenger and Charger Hellcat twins, and with a hearty dose of choices, my tester rings in at an eye-watering $87,370. You may purchase an actual sports activities automobile for that a lot.But there’s nothing fairly just like the Ram TRX. The Hellcat’s 6.2-liter V8 has all the time been one thing particular however throwing it right into a pickup truck leads to a automobile that exceeds the sum of its elements, delivering equal doses of excessive efficiency and hilarity. It’s a hoot.

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