Large pickup truck; Built in USA
  • 4-door ext. cab
  • crew cab short bed
  • reg. cab long bed
  • reg. cab short bed
  • longitudinal front-engine/rear- or 4-wheel drive
Good condition price range: $8,900 – $37,500*


2009 Dodge Ram 1500 Front


2009 Dodge Ram 1500 Rear


2009 Dodge Ram 1500 Interior


2009 Dodge Ram 1500 Profile


2009 Dodge Ram 1500 Interior-2

Pros:
  • Acceleration (V8)
  • Cargo room
  • Passenger room (front seat)
  • Ride
  • Seat comfort (front seat)
  • Visibility
Cons:
  • Fuel economy
  • Handling
  • Road noise (with 20-inch tires)

The latest Ram earns high marks for impressive ride comfort, creative storage options, and abundant available power. Improved cabin trappings over the previous generation are a nice bonus, sealing Ram as a Best Buy-just what Chrysler needs in the wake of its recent financial troubles. Chevrolet, Ford, and Toyota loyalists would do well to have look.

Overview

The redesign of Dodge’s Ram 1500 full-size pickup truck for 2009 included freshened styling, new comfort and convenience features, and more available power. Dodge also switched from the traditional leaf-spring rear suspension to a coil-spring setup. Offered with rear-drive or four-wheel drive, Dodge’s large pickup truck could have a two-door regular cab or a choice of two four-door cabs with conventional doors-dubbed the Quad Cab and the Crew Cab. Regular-cab trucks could be equipped with either a 6.4- or 8-foot cargo bed. The Quad Cab came with a 6.4-foot bed, while the Crew Cab used a 5.7-foot bed. Regular cabs seated up to three passengers; the others, up to six.

Ram 1500 models were available with any of three engines: a 215-horsepower 3.7-liter V6; a 310-hp 4.7-liter V8; or a 390-hp 5.7-liter Hemi V8. The new 390-hp engine replaced 2008’s 345-hp 5.7-liter Hemi. The 4.7 V8 was capable of running on E85 ethanol-blended fuel. Rams with V6 power came only with a four-speed automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive; V8s only with a five-speed automatic. All V8 Rams were offered with rear-drive or with four-wheel drive that should not be left engaged on dry pavement. Full-time 4WD also was available. Both 4WD systems included a low-range gear for off-roading. Maximum towing capacity was 8950 pounds.

Three trim levels were offered: ST, SLT, and Laramie. Standard safety features included antilock brakes, traction control, an antiskid system, and curtain side airbags. New for 2009 was the Ram Box Storage System. Available only on Crew Cabs, the Ram Box option included lockable cargo-bed storage bins and a bed divider that doubled as a bed extender. Also available were a wireless cell-phone link, DVD entertainment, a 30-gigabyte hard drive for storing digital music files and photos, a navigation system, and rear-seat in-floor storage bins. A rearview camera with parking assist and heated/cooled front seats became available during the 2009 model year. Competitors included the Chevrolet Silverado 1500, Ford F-150, and Toyota Tundra.

Yearly Updates

2010 Ram 1500
The Dodge brand no longer encompassed full-size trucks, so these models were now called, simply, Ram 1500 pickups. A gasoline/electric hybrid model and a diesel engine were slated to appear this season, but failed to materialize. Newly standard on all engines was Chrysler’s Interactive Decel Shut Off, which was designed to save fuel by shutting off the gasoline supply while slowing down. The 5.7-liter V8 also had Chrysler’s Multi-Displacement System of cylinder deactivation. A fuel-saver indicator was added to V6 models. Also new was an iPod control with glovebox connection. ST and SLT models had part-time four-wheel drive. Full-time 4WD, standard on Laramie, could be left engaged even on dry pavement.
2011 Ram 1500
The 2011 Ram 1500 lineup added sporty R/T, workhorse Tradesman and Express, and off-road Outdoorsman trim levels.
2012 Ram 1500
A top-line Laramie Limited trim level was added to the 2012 Dodge Ram 1500 roster, and V8 models got a six-speed automatic transmission to replace a five speed.
2013 Ram 1500
For 2013 Ram 1500 was significantly updated. Highlights included a new frame, available air suspension, a new 3.6-liter V6 engine, and retrimmed interiors. All V6 models also got a new “TorqueFlite 8” 8-speed automatic transmission. In early 2013, most Ram 1500 models with the more powerful 5.7-liter V8 got their own 8-speed automatic transmission to replace the 6-speed unit used at the beginning of the model year.
2014 Ram 1500
For 2014, Ram 1500 added a 240-horsepower 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6 engine.

Engines

longitudinal front-engine/rear- or 4-wheel drive

In 2009, Ram 1500 models were available with any of three engines: a 215-horsepower 3.7-liter V6; a 310-hp 4.7-liter V8; or a 390-hp 5.7-liter Hemi V8. The new 390-hp engine replaced 2008’s 345-hp 5.7-liter Hemi. The 4.7 V8 was capable of running on E85 ethanol-blended fuel. Rams with V6 power came only with a four-speed automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive; V8s only with a five-speed automatic. All V8 Rams were offered with rear-drive or with four-wheel drive that should not be left engaged on dry pavement. Full-time 4WD also was available. Both 4WD systems included a low-range gear for off-roading. Maximum towing capacity was 8950 pounds.

ohc V6
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 3.7/226
Engine HP 215
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 235
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
4-speed automatic

14/20

Turbodiesel dohc V6
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 3.0/182
Engine HP 240
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 420
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
8-speed automatic

20/28

dohc V6
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 3.6/220
Engine HP 305
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 269
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
8-speed automatic

17/25

ohc V8
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 4.7/287
Engine HP 310
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 330
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
5-speed automatic
6-speed automatic
14/19
14/20
15.4

ohv V8
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 5.7/345
Engine HP 390-395
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 407
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
5-speed automatic
6-speed automatic
8-speed automatic
14/20
14/20
14/20
15.1

Road Test

Acceleration stands tall with either V8 engine. The 4.7-liter V8 is nearly the performance equal of the 5.3-liter V8 from Chevrolet, or the 5.4-liter V8 from Ford. Pulling strongly from a stop, it delivers more than adequate passing punch. The 5.7-liter V8 is stronger still, with impressive launch power plus abundant passing and merging muscle.

Fuel economy, while hardly thrifty, isn’t bad for a big pickup. A test Ram Quad Cab with the 4.7-liter V8 averaged 15.4 mph in an even mix of city and highway driving, 17.2 mpg with more highway miles. An extended-use AWD crew cab with the Hemi averaged 15.1 mpg overall. Dodge recommends mid-grade 89-octane gas for the Hemi; other engines run on regular-grade gas, though the 4.7-liter V8 can also run on E85 ethanol.

Ride quality ranks as best in class. For 2009, Ram became the only full-size pickup to use a coil-spring rear suspension instead of the traditional leaf-spring arrangement. The end result is a remarkably compliant ride with little of the rear-end hop normally exhibited by unloaded pickups.

Ram is far too large and prone to cornering lean to be called nimble, but car-like isn’t really a stretch. Still, there’s too little on-center steering response, and Laramie models with their 20-inch wheels seem prone to highway wander-requiring frequent correction. Brake response is excellent, with little noseplow in simulated panic stops.

Dodge claimed to have paid special attention to wind and road noise, and those efforts paid off. Unpaved surfaces result in undue droning, especially at speed, but the cabin is otherwise impressively serene.

Huge gauges are boldly marked and easy to read at a glance. Major controls are mostly convenient to access, though audio and climate switchgear, positioned towards the passenger side of the center console, demand a long stretch to reach. Perceptions of Ram quality depend on where you sit. Front-seat occupants are treated to a cabin generally finished in high-grade and soft-touch materials. Laramie models are especially pleasing. Though consistent in design, the rear seating area is fitted with lower-grade components, including hard plastic door trim and generally less touch-friendly surfaces.

In the front seats, a high step-in is about the only complaint one can muster. Large, firmly padded seats offer impressive long-drive comfort and back support. Visibility is generally good, though front roof pillars are rather thick. Flatter seats in the back seem less supportive. Here too, a high step-up complicates entry and exit.

The interior hosts numerous storage cubbies, bins, and wells. Front-bench-seat models with optional premium cloth upholstery have a fold-away center armrest that doubles as a storage area, but it’s really too shallow for anything more than cell phones and iPods. Bucket-seat versions enjoy a huge, deep center-console storage area. All models have a two-tiered glovebox with a chilled upper compartment. The available Ram Box storage wells combine to offer sufficient space for a week’s worth of groceries or a couple of golf bags. Those lockable, lined boxes include drainage holes so they can be used as coolers.

Ratings

Model Tested: 2010 Dodge Ram 1500 SLT Crew Cab w/4.7 V8, 2WD

Ratings values are on a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the best. With the exception of Value, these numbers reflect how the vehicle compares against the universe of vehicles, not just against rivals in its class.

Performance

Acceleration - 6
60%
Fuel Economy - 4
40%
Ride Quality - 7
70%
Steering/Handling - 4
40%
Quietness - 7
70%

Accommodations

Controls/Materials - 5
50%
Room/Comfort Front - 9
90%
Room/Comfort Rear - 8
80%
Cargo Room - 8
80%

Other

Value - 9
90%

Total: 67

Specifications

4-door ext. cab
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
140.0 229.0 79.4 75.1
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
1420 26.0 6
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
41.0 39.7 41.0 34.7
crew cab short bed
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
140.5 229.0 79.4 75.1
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
1430 26.0 6
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
41.0 39.9 41.0 40.3
reg. cab long bed
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
140.5 231.0 79.4 74.4
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
1510 32.0 3
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
40.3 NA 41.0 NA
reg. cab short bed
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
120.5 209.0 79.4 74.6
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
1340 26.0 3
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
40.3 NA 41.0 NA
Safety Ratings

Model Tested: 2011 Ram 1500 extended cab 4-door ext. cab

NHTSA

(5 is the highest rating)

Front Impact Test

Driver Injury - 3
60%
Front Passenger Injury - 2
40%

Side Impact Test

Driver Injury - 5
100%
Rear Passenger Injury - 5
100%

HLDI

(A score of 100 is average. Lower is better)

Collision N/A
Injury N/A
Theft N/A

Trouble Spots

Air conditioner
Description: A hissing sound may be heard when the air conditioning is on, requiring replacement of the A/C expansion valve. (2009)
Climate control
Description: The ambient temperature may not be correct and/or the low washer fluid light may come on, necessitating replacement of both sensors. (2009)
Seat
Description: The front seats may squeak, or make other noises when accelerating, cornering, or adjusting the seat. They must be lubricated. (2009)
Fuel door
Description: The nozzle may click off repeatedly when refueling. If allowing the engine to idle 60 seconds before shutting it down does not help, the fuel tank needs replacement. (2009)

Recall History

2009 Ram 1500
Description: Windshield wiper module on some vehicles may be susceptible to water intrusion that could result in partial or complete loss of wiper capability.
2009 Ram 1500
Description: Software programmed into heating/ventilation/air conditioning module may cause windshield defrosting/defogging function to become inoperative, decreasing driver’s visibility.
2009-10 Ram 1500
Description: Improperly formed or missing brake booster input rod retaining clip could result in brake failure without warning.
2009-12 Ram 1500
Description: The rear axle pinion spline was undersized and nut may loosen. The axle could lock up and cause loss of control.
2009-2010 Ram 1500
Description: These vehicles may have been built with an improperly formed or missing brake booster input rod retaining clip. This could result in brake failure without warning, which could cause a crash. Chrysler will replace the brake booster input rod retaining clip free of charge.
2010 Ram 1500
Description: These vehicles may have been built with a wireless ignition node (WIN) module exhibiting a binding condition of the solenoid latch. The result of the defect could lead to a condition where the key may be removed from the ignition switch (WIN module) prior to placing the shifter in park. This could result in the potential for unintended vehicle movement and could increase the risk of a crash. Dealers will inspect and replace the WIN module free of charge.
2010-2011 Ram
Description: Some vehicles equipped with diesel engine and a hydroboost brake system may be equipped with a power steering reservoir cap with excessive vent pressure levels that may result in brake pedals that are slow to return. Brake lights that are slow to extinguish could increase the risk of a crash. Chrysler will notify owners and dealers will replace the power steering reservoir cap free of charge.
2011 Ram light-duty (DS) vehicles
Description: Some of these vehicles may experience a separation at the crimped end of the power steering pressure hose assembly. Leaked power steering fluid onto hot engine components could cause a fire. Dealers will inspect and replace as necessary the power steering pressure hoses free of charge.
2011 Ram 1500
Description: Some vehicles may experience a noise (growl, grind) coming from the rear axle bearing which could eventually seize. A failure of the bearing could cause the vehicle to stall increasing the risk of a crash.
2012 Ram 1500
Description: Some vehicles have incorrect airbag occupant restraint control (ORC) module. Airbag may not deploy as intended.
2012 Ram 1500
Description: Some trucks have an incorrectly sized spare tire. The spare could unexpectedly active the antiskid system and increase the risk of a crash.
2012-14 Ram 1500
Description: The steering-wheel wiring harness could rub against the airbag module retaining spring. A short circuit could cause the airbag to deploy unexpectedly.
2013 Ram 1500 4WD
Description: The transmission output shaft could fracture resulting in loss of power.
2013 Ram 1500
Description: Faulty software may cause antiskid system to deactivate when the truck is started and increase the risk of loss of control.
2013 Ram 1500
Description: The parking brake equalizer cable was set incorrectly and the parking brake may not hold on a 20% grade.
2013 Ram 1500
Description: The coolant bypass valve might stick and not allow coolant to the heater core. The windshield defroster would fail to function.
2013 Ram 1500 with optional premium taillights
Description: Turn signals may not flash at required rate.
2013-14 Ram 1500
Description: The radio may have software that allows third parties access to vehicle control systems.
2013-14 Ram 1500
Description: The side impact sensor may overly sensitive and deploy seat airbags and curtain side airbags unexpectedly.
2014 Ram 1500 Quad Cabs
Description: Curtain side airbags may not cover C pillars and adequately protect rear seat passengers.
2014 Ram 1500 2WD with diesel engine
Description: The battery harness could rub against the frame and cause a short that could stall the engine or start a fire.
2014 Ram 1500
Description: Warning lights may not illuminate as designed.
2014 Ram 1500 4WD
Description: The parking brake may not be engaged when the transmission is in Park and truck could roll.
2014 Ram 1500
Description: The rear shock absorbers may detach from the vehicle and cause damage to tires or other components. This could also reduce braking effectiveness.

Equipment Lists

Equipment lists are only viewable on larger screen sizes.

Pricing

Used-car pricing varies widely depending on local market conditions. Therefore, we recommend visiting websites that list used cars for sale to get a better idea of what a specific model is selling for in your area.