2013 Ram Heavy Duty Preview

Jeff Youngs | Jun 07, 2013
  • Redesigned for 2013
  • Heavy-duty full-size pickup
  • Rear- or 4-wheel drive (2WD or 4WD)
  • V-8 gasoline or inline-6 turbo-diesel power
  • Three cab sizes and two bed lengths
  • Seating for up to 6
  • RamBox now available
  • Uconnect 8.4-inch touch screen newly offered
  • Increased towing and hauling capability


The Ram Heavy Duty (HD) pickups are the brand's brawniest, most capable pickups. They are offered in 2500 and 3500 models, each with more carrying and towing capability. Three cab styles and two bed lengths are offered, as are 2WD or 4WD and, for the 3500 model, single or dual rear wheels.

The Ram Heavy Duty is redesigned for 2013, with a stronger frame, more power, revised suspension, greater towing and hauling capacity, and a reworked interior. The brand's RamBox storage system is newly available, and so are its Uconnect Touch 8.4-inch touch screen and a new 7-inch TFT configurable instrument cluster.

The Ram Heavy Duty competes with the Chevrolet Silverado HD, GMC Sierra HD, and Ford F-Series Super Duty.

Exterior Features

Ram Heavy Duty pickups are offered in 2-door regular cab, 4-door Crew Cab, and stretched 4-door Mega Cab body styles. Regular (6 ft., 4 in.) and long (8-ft.) bed lengths are offered. The 3500 is available with single or dual rear wheels. Standard exterior equipment on the Ram Heavy Duty includes automatic headlights, Class V hitch receiver, and LT245/70R17 tires on steel wheels. Single-wheel 3500 models get LT275/70R18 tires and dual-wheel 3500s have LT235/80R17 tires.

The Ram Heavy Duty is now offered with the RamBox cargo management system, which has illuminated, lockable, drainable bins in both bed sides. It also includes a stowable bed divider/bed extender, and a cargo rail system with adjustable cleats.

Interior Features

Regular cabs seat two or three, and Crew and Mega cabs seat 5 or 6. The Mega Cab adds 3 inches of rear leg room. Standard interior equipment in the Tradesman model--Ram's basic work truck offering--includes air conditioning, vinyl upholstery, vinyl floors, cruise control, tilt steering column, vehicle information center, 6-speaker AM/FM stereo, and theft-deterrent system. The regular cab Tradesman has manual door locks and windows, but the Crew Cab gets power door locks and power windows, as well as in-floor storage boxes.

Optional Features

Additional trim levels of the 2013 Ram Heavy Duty include SLT, Big Horn/Lone Star, Outdoorsman, Laramie, and Laramie Longhorn. An off-road-oriented Power Wagon is also offered in a base trim level, as well as Tradesman and Laramie trims. Unique Power Wagon features include a 4.56 axle ratio, 180-amp alternator, electronic locking front and rear differentials, Bilstein shocks, transfer case and fuel tank skid plates, front electronically disconnecting stabilizer bars, front-mounted winch, and LT285/70R17 all-terrain tires on alloy wheels.

Ram HD SLT equipment consists of carpeting, an overhead console, cloth upholstery, manually adjustable front driver and passenger seats, power windows, remote keyless entry, rear sliding window (manual on the regular cab, power on the Crew Cab and Mega Cab), satellite radio, electronic trailer brake controller, and 17- or 18-inch chromed steel wheels. The Big Horn/Lone Star adds fog lamps, premium cloth upholstery, 10-way power-adjustable driver's seat with lumbar adjustment, 115-volt power outlet, leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls, 5-inch touch-screen radio, Bluetooth connectivity, voice recognition, and alloy wheels.

The Outdoorsman has power-folding heated exterior mirrors with puddle lamps and auto dimming, two-tone paint, 7-inch TFT instrument cluster, universal garage door opener, auto-dimming rearview mirror, rubber floor mats, 8.4-inch touch screen, on-/off-road tires, and a media hub with a USB port, auxiliary input jack and SD card slot.

The Laramie adds leather upholstery, dual-zone automatic climate control, 9-speaker audio system, heated steering wheel, heated/ventilated front seats, 6-way power-adjustable front passenger seat, memory for the driver's seat and mirrors, security alarm, rearview camera, and polished alloy wheels.

The Laramie Longhorn features a spray-in bedliner, running boards, real wood interior trim, full-size front floor console, power-adjustable pedals, premium leather filigree upholstery, and a navigation system with Sirius Traffic and Travel Link.

Under the Hood

The 2013 Ram Heavy Duty offers gas and diesel engines. The standard engine is the gasoline-powered, 5.7-liter Hemi V-8. It produces 383 horsepower and 400 lb.-ft. of torque, and it is paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission.

Buyers can also opt for the 6.7-liter Cummins High Output Turbo Diesel inline 6-cylinder engine. When paired with a 6-speed manual transmission, it makes 350 horsepower and 660 lb.-ft. of torque. When mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission, output increases to 370 horsepower and 800 lb.-ft. of torque. An even more powerful version is offered for 3500 models; it makes 385 horsepower and 850 lb.-ft. of torque. The diesel can run on B20 biodiesel fuel.

The Ram's available 4WD system has low-range gearing for towing and off-road use. It works part time, meaning it shouldn't be left engaged on dry pavement. It is available with a manual or electric transfer case and electronically locking front and rear differentials.

The Ram 2500 can haul up to 3170 pounds of payload and tow up to 17,950 pounds, while a Ram 3500 can carry up to 6730 pounds of payload and tow up to 30,010 pounds.

Fuel Economy

As it has a gross vehicle weight rating over 8,500 pounds and is therefore exempt from testing, no EPA fuel-economy ratings are available for the 2013 Ram Heavy Duty.


The 2013 Ram Heavy Duty comes standard with dual front air bags, front side air bags, curtain side air bags, tire-pressure monitor, anti-lock brakes with brake assist and electronic brake-force distribution, hill-start assist, traction control, electronic stability control, and trailer sway control.

The 2013 Ram HD has not been crash tested by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) or the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).


The Ram Heavy Duty is offered with a choice of four radios. The base unit, Uconnect 3.0, is a basic AM/FM/CD radio. Uconnect 5.0 comes with a 5-inch touch screen and adds satellite radio and Bluetooth connectivity. Uconnect 8.4A includes voice recognition and an 8.4-inch touch screen. Navigation is not included, but it can be added. Uconnect 8.4AN comes standard with a navigation system with Sirius Traffic and Travel Link.

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