WELCOME
April 2nd
          Latest tank of fuel averaged 17L/100km in mixed driving. Managed to do some moving for friends on a few occasions, the usual commute to work and home plus a few short highway slogs. A couple times I manually shifted the transmission mostly to turn off the MDS which does increase engine response and I do notice the difference when MDS cuts on/off.

110,000km HEMI review
          I purchased the truck with about 64K kms and have now added over 55K kms in 3.5 years. So far the engine has been trouble free. Overall the 5.7 V8 acts as a mild V6 below 2500rpm although that might partly be due to the 5 speed transmission which is a bit lazy off the line especially when running regular 87 octane fuel. I notice best engine and transmission response come from using Shell 91 fuel as it doesn't contain ethanol. I also get the best mileage but not enough to negate using it regularly as it's 20c/L higher cost. The MDS is great for highway drives but reduces responsiveness in the city. I often find myself shutting off MDS by downshifting the transmission manually on the shifter to '5'. This is a 5 speed transmission so I'm assuming it uses the kickdown 3rd ratio as a gear enabling it to read as a 6 speed on the dash.
          The engine cruises at 1800rpm at 115km/h, so under 2000rpm cruising at 75mph. Ample torque of the HEMI enables 7% grade climbs; not downshifting and maintaining speed. It tows adequately, although I've never pulled more than 3800lbs with the truck. I have overloaded it a few times with payload (no trailer) and it didn't feel even close to carrying the weight I did. The engine will hold 3500rpm all day without a doubt. For towing close to max I don't think I would recommend the half ton truck, but rather a 2500 for the stiffer suspension and added stability it provides. The 5.7 would no doubt be able to haul 10K lbs around every day. I'm not due for plugs again until 120K kms although so far the truck drives like new.

February 5th
          I am behind on regular entries. Aug 2017 I had the tires rotated, a tie rod and exhaust manifold replaced, along with a few other lesser costly bits replaced under the aftermarket warranty, which saved me just over $1600. The RAM runs like a champ, at least until mid January when I noticed some brake noise and light pulsing when braking, along with some shake in the steering at all speeds. As I purchased rear rotors and pads back in Sept 2017 (sale at Canadian Tire), I attempted to install myself using an electric impact gun but it didn't have enough torque to remove the bolt after several attemps and a few close calls on overheating the gun.
          As the rear brakes were in fact past due I had a local shop, Maple Auto, replace the rear brakes, balance the front tires (as they were out of whack by quite a bit they also balanced the rear tires as I did go over on the last tire rotation!), and do a generalized checkup of the vehicle for $400. Once again, it runs like new. I'm also due for an oil change, I've been a bit reluctant to change the oil as early as 5,000kms as I've been running full synthetic since early 2015 and have since increased the mileage to between 7-8,000kms. Checking the oil colour at 5,000kms is still somewhat golden so a longer change interval is doable. Usually I run Amsoil signature series oil but due to the aftermarket warranty I can't perform my own oil changes and get them done around the corner at Oil Changers. For about $93 they use 7 quarts of full syn Petro Canada 5W20, check the tires, check and top up fluids, check bulbs, etc. It's money well spent when it's -20C outside!
July 12th
          New Lumens LED headlights are 500% better then the stock bulbs. I noticed after pulling the stock bulbs that they seemed tinted over most of the lens. The smart controller is required to stop flickering due to voltage fluctuations at idle.
January 11th
          The low fuel light came on with 1/16 tank remaining. I drove an astonishing 500km on 93.24L, which rounds out to a not too bad 18.65L/100km with mostly city driving. The Durango under the same conditions, would only muster 340km on 80L, or roughly 23.5L/100km. Mileage will improve more in the summer, as I was operating the Ram primarily in 2wd, so I'm sure I lost more fuel to wheelspin than I would have using 4wd. I am also impressed at how well the Ram drives in 2wd, even in light snow with no weight in the vehicle. Also of note the GoodYear Wrangler ATS tires are in their last year of life with roughly 4/32 of tread remaining. Another bonus with the Ram over my old Durango R/T, is the tire size. P265/70R17 tires are half the cost than the Durango's 275/60R17 size. Long term, the Ram should beat the Durango's operating cost per mile by a solid 30%. Just like the Durango, with the Ram, parts are everywhere and aftermarket support is impressive. My only fault with the Ram is the poor headlights. They don't aim toward the road at all, merely about 100 feet in front of the truck and the beam isn't overly wide, making them not much better than the Durangos headlights. That might be my first upgrade.
January 3rd
          After a freezing rain storm here, I am impressed yet again with the Ram. The HEMI doesn't really come alive until pushed over 3500rpm. The throttle is very easy to modulate and you have just enough 'go' off the line to get rolling, even on ice, without worry of triggering the traction control. Acceleration is comfortable keeping RPM under 2000 in most driving conditions. The MDS works flawlessly. I'm just over half a tank remaining with 270kms driven. Not bad.
December 15th
          My initial impressions of the new Ram is great. It's very flexible vehicle. One thing I'm pondering is how to cover the bed to keep the snow out at a reasonable cost while still maintaining the flexibility of the bed. I had a high rise cap on my 1990 GMC C1500 and it worked great, but limited what I could 'throw' into the bed as storing a large cap when it isn't needed isn't easy. In three days I've burned a meager 1/4 tank of fuel and will get a chance to stretch it's legs over the holidays. At least I'm not burned with 2300rpm idling, exhaust leak that allowed the CO to get inside the cab and a whopping 26.4L 100/km from the Durango. If the Ram stays under 20L/100km in 100% city driving I'll be very content. I have been playing around with the MDS system and watching my throttle.
          Cruising RPM is very good. I got it up to 70mph and the rpm was in the 1700rpm range, which is aided by the tall 3.55 gears. I climbed a 6% grade and it stayed in 5th gear all the way. It was only me on board with some audio equipment but even with the tow/haul engaged and a trailer behind, I'm sure the HEMI has what it takes for low cost long term ownership. The only downside is the spark plug changes every 50,000kms.
December 18th
          2000 Durango R/T traded in on a 2011 Ram Quad Cab SXT 4x4 HEMI.
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This site and all of it's contents are operated and maintained by Brian Wilson for Bio Diesel Technologies and BW Lawn Care 2003 - 2006.
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