Buyer's Guide

2021 Ram 2500
Select a Different Model (36 Available): Big Horn 2WD Long Bed Crew Cab
Towing (Max) $ 19200 lbs.
Payload (Max) 3550 lbs.
Horsepower 410@5,600
Torque 429@4,000
See All Specs
Free Price Quote From a Local Dealer
2021 Ram 2500 MODEL OVERVIEW

Pros

  • Responsive gas engine, unstoppable diesel
  • Power Wagon off-road capability
  • Tasteful, comfortable interior

Cons

  • Diesel could use a newer eight- or 10-speed automatic
  • Diesels are slower than the competition

The Ram 2500 is a heavy-duty version of the quarter-ton Ram 1500, complete with a burlier gas V-8 or a Cummins turbodiesel I-6 with ludicrous torque figures. Ram introduced the current-gen 2500 for the 2019 model year and the truck has undergone few changes since, although a Limited Night Edition has been added for 2021. It competes with other heavy-duty pickups, including the Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD, GMC Sierra 2500HD, and Ford F-250 Super Duty.

What We Think

Simply put, the heavy duty Ram is the best truck in its segment and one of the best trucks on the market, as evidenced by its 2020 Truck of the Year win. In that evaluation, we praised the truck's design, which is not only the most aerodynamic in the segment, it's also the most attractive. That design excellence carries over to an interior that looks and functions more like a tastefully appointed mobile office than the cabin of a giant pickup.

This Ram wouldn't be a great pickup if it couldn't tow and haul and work with the best of them, and it accomplishes just that. The truck's strong gas engine is responsive and the 850-lb-ft Cummins diesel makes towing a breeze. The current 2500 has a much more comfortable unladen ride quality than its predecessor, too.

Consider the Ram 2500's price advantage over its rivals from Ford and GM and it becomes all the more appealing. Both entry-level and top-spec models undercut competitors in terms of price. This big rig is the jam.

Performance and Fuel Economy

The smaller of Ram's heavy-duty pickups can be ordered with a gas V-8 or a diesel-fueled inline-six. Gas variants employ a 6.4-liter naturally aspirated V-8 developing 410 hp and 429 lb-ft of torque. The gas V-8 is mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission to drive power to the rear wheels. The EPA doesn't evaluate fuel economy for heavy-duty trucks but when our RealMPG team tested a Ram 2500HD Power Wagon with 4WD and the Crew Cab body style, it returned 10.2/15.3 mpg city/highway.

If you need maximum performance out of your heavy-duty Ram, go for the diesel. It's a pricey option ($9,300 on the 2020 model) but the performance gains are worth it. Shelling out for the diesel swaps the gas V-8 and eight-speed auto for a 6.7-liter turbo I-6 and a beefed up six-speed automatic. The oil-burner makes 370 hp and a stump-pulling 850 lb-ft of torque. We didn't have a chance to RealMPG test a diesel 2500 but a 3500 Crew Cab model with 4WD and a high-output version of the I-6 achieved 13.2/18.0 mpg.

All Ram 2500s are offered with standard RWD and available 4WD except the Power Wagon, which is only available with 4WD.

Towing and Payload Capacities

The strongest argument for a heavy-duty truck is that it can accomplish more work than a more plebeian half-ton pickup. Rear-drive regular cab diesels achieve the highest towing capacity; these trucks can tug as much as 19,680 pounds. Similarly configured 2500s with the gas V-8 pull 17,350 pounds.

If you're after maximum payload capacity, it makes more sense to opt for the gas engine. Regular cab RWD gas trucks can carry up to 4,380 pounds while equivalent diesel-powered examples are rated for 3,060 pounds.

Cab and Bed Configurations

Unlike truck offerings from Nissan or Honda, the Ram 2500 is offered with a wealth of cab and bed options. The heavy-duty Ram can be ordered with a single-row regular cab, two-row crew cab, or a roomier two-row mega cab. Regular cab models can only be ordered with an 8-foot bed; crew cab trucks are available with the 8-footer or a 6-foot-4-inch bed; the 2500 mega cab is exclusively offered with the shorter box. Cab and bed availability changes by trim.

Safety

Heavy duty pickups are rarely evaluated for crash safety, but the big Ram 2500 is available with a collection of driver-assist features. Blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, and automatic high beams are all part of the Safety Group that's optional on all trims.

Cargo Space and Interior Room

The Ram 2500 offers seating for two or three in regular cab form and five or six if you opt for the crew or mega cab version. All body styles include 40.9 inches of legroom up front; crew cab variants offer 40.2 inches of rear legroom while the mega cab provides a limo-like 43.1 inches. Opting for the shorter 6-foot-four-inch bed yields 57.5 cubic feet of cargo volume whereas the 8-footer provides 74.7 cubic feet.

Technology

The headline here is the 2500 Limited's standard 12-inch portrait-style touchscreen infotainment display with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Most variants feature an 8.4-inch display with similar functionality, but the big screen is available as an option on all but the entry-level Tradesman. That truck makes do with a basic 5.0-inch display with Bluetooth connectivity and little else. Six-speaker audio is standard on lower trims while premium models get a 10-speaker premium system and a 17-speaker setup is optional.

Key Competitors:

  • Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD
  • GMC Sierra 2500HD
  • Ford F-250 Super Duty

2021 RAM 2500 SPECIFICATIONS
OVERVIEW
FEATURES
WARRANTY/RECALL
SAFETY
REBATES
Engine Name
Engine: V8 6.4 Liter HEMI
Transmission Name
Transmission, 8 Speed Automatic Mode Select with Manual Mode (8HP75)
Trim
Big Horn 2WD Long Bed Crew Cab
Class
Full-Size Pickup HD
Horsepower
410@5,600
Standard MPG
N/R
Body Style
Truck
Drivetrain
RWD
Fuel Type
Unleaded Regular
Seating Capacity
6/5
Package Invoice Retail
Show Full Specs
Corrosion Warranty Miles
Unlimited
Maintenance Warranty Months
none
Corrosion Warranty Months
36
Powertrain Warranty Miles
60,000
Full Warranty Miles
36,000
Powertrain Warranty Months
60
Full Warranty Months
36
Roadside Assistance Miles
100,000
Maintenance Warranty Miles
N/R
Roadside Assistance Months
60
IIHS Best Pick
0
NHTSA Rating Front Driver
Not Rated
IIHS Front Moderate Overlap
N/R
NHTSA Rating Front Passenger
Not Rated
IIHS Front Small Overlap
N/R
NHTSA Rating Front Side
Not Rated
IIHS Overall Side Crash
N/R
NHTSA Rating Overall
Not Rated
IIHS Rear Crash
N/R
NHTSA Rating Rear Side
Not Rated
IIHS Roof Strength
N/R
NHTSA Rating Rollover
Not Rated
Amount Description Expiry Date
$0 0% Financing for a maximum term of 36 Months - FCA announces APR rates on select models. 02-01-2021
$0 2.9% Financing for a maximum term of 48 Months - FCA announces APR rates on select models. 02-01-2021
$0 3.9% Financing for a maximum term of 60 Months - FCA announces APR rates on select models. 02-01-2021
$0 5.9% Financing for a maximum term of 72 Months - FCA announces APR rates on select models. 02-01-2021
$500 FCA announces a Bonus Cash offer on select models for eligible Military personnel. 01-03-2022
$500 FCA announces a Bonus Cash offer on select models to customers currently leasing an FCA vehicle. 02-01-2021
$500 FCA announces a Bonus Cash offer to consumers currently leasing a competitive vehicle who will be purchasing or leasing a new select model. [Regional Incentive. See dealer for availability.] 02-01-2021