Vehicles that perform well in road tests by some of the most popular automotive publications, such as Car and Driver, Motor Trend and Automobile, don't always score well in in Consumer Reports' more regimented, practical test procedures, so the Ram 1500's climb to the top of CR's scoreboard is a boon for the well-received pickup truck, which CR also put on its "recommended" list.

To start off with, the freshened 2013 Ram 1500 has a lighter, stiffer chassis than before, and the four-wheel-drive Crew Cab that CR bought and tested performed flawlessly and achieved class-leading fuel economy (15 miles per gallon) with the 5.7-liter Hemi V8 – the most popular engine choice for the 1500 – and the new eight-speed automatic transmission. The unique-in-its-class rear coil spring setup endowed the truck with "one of the best rides of any pickup," CR reports. That helped it earn its class-leading road-test score of 78, well ahead of the nearest competition still in production, the Toyota Tundra (69) and the Ford F-150 (68). It's worth noting, however, that the Chevrolet Avalanche outscores the 1500 by two points (80), but production of that vehicle ends after the current 2013 model year.

About the only things the publication could find wrong with the truck were a heavy tailgate and a high step up into the cabin. Get ready for the next round later this summer when CR is finished testing the 2014 Chevrolet Silverado, which is doing well so far in the publication's tests.

To see what we think of the 1500, head over to our First Drive review of the Ram 1500 SLT with the Pentastar 3.6-liter V6, and feel free to take a look at the Consumer Reports press release below.
Show full PR text
RAM 1500 RANKS AT TOP IN CONSUMER REPORTS' TESTS OF FULL-SIZE PICKUPS

Ram 1500 delivers impressive class-leading performance

YONKERS, NY- The freshened 2013 Ram 1500 now tops Consumer Reports' rankings of, full-size pickups, delivering impressive performance and outpointing strong competitors, both domestic and foreign.

"The Ram 1500 is surprisingly luxurious and refined-but still fully capable of doing hard work when needed," said Jake Fisher, director of Consumer Reports' Auto Test Center in East Haddam, Connecticut. "Continued interior and powertrain improvements make the Ram a particularly well-rounded choice."

For 2013, the Ram got a lighter and stiffer frame, a revised interior with a new infotainment system, and updated powertrains. Consumer Reports tested a four-wheel-drive Ram 1500 Crew Cab, with the most popular engine option-the 5.7-liter Hemi V8-and the new efficient eight-speed automatic transmission. The combination delivers seamless power and still returns a class-leading 15 mpg overall in CR's own fuel economy tests.

The complete tests and ratings of the Ram 1500 appear on www.ConsumerReports.org. Updated daily, ConsumerReports.org is the go-to Website for the latest auto reviews, product news, blogs on breaking news and car buying information. Check out CR's ongoing Twitter feed at @CRCars.

The Ram 1500 earned a 78-point overall road test score. Other tested full-size pickups include, the Toyota Tundra (69) and the iconic Ford F-150 (68). Consumer Reports is evaluating the redesigned 2014 Chevrolet Silverado and will announce its findings later this summer. First impressions are that the Silverado is a well-rounded and refined truck that will strongly challenge the Ram in our Ratings. Ford's F-150 will be redesigned for 2015.

While the Chevrolet Avalanche currently outscores the Ram by two points, Avalanche production ended after the current 2013 model year.

Prior versions of the Ram have been reliable so Consumer Reports is Recommending the freshened truck. To be Recommended, a vehicle must perform well in CR's battery of tests, have average or better reliability in CR's Annual Auto Survey and perform well in government and industry crash tests.

The Ram delivers one of the best rides of any pickup, thanks to its unique coil spring rear suspension. It has a super-quiet, super-roomy crew cab, and the optional UConnect infotainment touch screen is one of the best in the business. On the downside, the step up to the cabin is very high, and-unlike some other pickups-the Ram's tailgate isn't damped or sprung, so it's heavy.

Consumer Reports is the world's largest independent product-testing organization. Using its more than 50 labs, auto test center, and survey research center, the nonprofit rates thousands of products and services annually. Founded in 1936, Consumer Reports has over 8 million subscribers to its magazine, website and other publications. Its advocacy division, Consumers Union, works for health reform, food and product safety, financial reform, and other consumer issues in Washington, D.C., the states, and in the marketplace.


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  • 75 Comments
      Andrew TheBoss
      • 1 Year Ago
      Looks like a dinosaur. Hope soon people will abandon this kind of vehicles for more reliable and efficient cars. Probably is ok for the Americans who lives in farms. In Italy many road are too tight for this car, Of course historical centres are off limits...
        Cumminsdad
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Andrew TheBoss
        Stay in Italy and keep the little truck things you have there.
        SpitterGuy
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Andrew TheBoss
        Who says that they're not reliable? I doubt it wouldn't be CR's top choice if it weren't reliable. Who says that they're not efficient (for a truck)? Clearly they state "class leading fuel economy". There are a lot more American's than you think that actually NEED a vehicle like this. If you're going to complain about us "dirty" American's, save yourself the gripe and start nagging the Chinese to clean up their act! Almost all of their major metropolitan areas are smog covered.
        Timothy Tibbetts
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Andrew TheBoss
        Not even going to bother.
      Master Austin
      • 1 Year Ago
      CR has been irrelevant for quite some time. Reality is the best selling vehicles in their segments are vehicles CR wouldn't recommend to begin with. CR recommendation years ago hasnt helped the Tundra one bit either. In other news, the F150 had a recommend month for June. Moving on.
        pickles
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Master Austin
        Huh? CR eagerly recommends the Accord, Prius, CR-V, Elantra, Odyssey, BMW 328i- amongst the best selling vehicles within their segments. These cars sell in huge numbers. Congrats to Ram. Consumer Reports is on the 'side' of the buyer.. win-win.
          normc32
          • 1 Year Ago
          @pickles
          You probably buy their kitchen appliances ratings too?
      • 1 Year Ago
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        jtav2002
        • 1 Year Ago
        More comments from people who don't really own a truck and just repeat stuff they've heard on the internet so they can feel like they have some sort of useful input to give. How many Tundra's have you had that have failed. Just wondering. I can't imagine anyone would post on Autoblog without actual evidence and documented cases to back their claim.
      rmkensington
      • 1 Year Ago
      I still dont trust their long term reliability.
      pickles
      • 1 Year Ago
      I love cars. Always have. And with the 19 cars (Saabs, BMWs, VWs, Honda, Toyotas, smart, MINI, Datsun.. etc) I've had in 26 years of driving, they've been spot on with reliability reviews every time. The hate for CR seems foolish. They want YOUR cars to be great for you. Where does the enthusiast loose in this situation? For me, I'd rather know I'm not buying crapola with my bucks. Today, with the internet there are additional sources, like Edmunds consumer reviews (which usually mirrors CR's reports). I trust and appreciate what CR does for all of us.
        miles
        • 1 Year Ago
        @pickles
        Pickles, I saw a CR review of midsize sedans on Fox a few weeks ago, they only recommended Asian cars. The Fox dude said "what about the domestics?" and the girl from CR said "well, there's the new Malibu". ??? This CR goofball either had no clue about the domestic cars in that class due to incompetence, or she's got something against the domestics. Why else would a CR spokesperson recommend one of the worst domestic cars in it's class? This is the kind of thing that reinforces my low opinion of CR.
        DK
        • 1 Year Ago
        @pickles
        19 cars in 26 years, did you really have any of them long enough to test their reliability?
      the.fog
      • 1 Year Ago
      This is called "throwing the domestics a bone" to TRY and maintain their appearance of not being horribly import-biased. Not to mention, CR's methods are so flawed that the publication is a joke anyway (at least, to people with common sense).
      Jake
      • 1 Year Ago
      At least you have it pictured in its natural environment - the mechanic's shop.
        car-a-holic
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Jake
        That's funny! Lol parked next to the Toyota, Nissan, ford and Chevy all!
      • 1 Year Ago
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        • 1 Year Ago
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      • 1 Year Ago
      [blocked]
        MAX
        • 1 Year Ago
        CR almost always bends over backwards to favor Toyota but the new Ram is so superior CR would have lost credibility if it didn't pick the RAM especially after the big gas mileage boost from the industry leading ZF 8 speed transmission.
      dmclone
      • 1 Year Ago
      After owning 15+ cars in the last 25 years of driving I just bought my first truck. I had owned 10+ Japanese brands in a row and had good luck with all of them. So when i went to look for a new truck I was pretty open minded. I knew that since this is such a competitive market, it would be hard to get a bad truck. I drove the Toyota, Ford, Ram, and sat in the 2014 Chevy. I was probably leaning towards Toyota before researching these trucks so it was the first that I drove. I was very disappointed and I would say it was in 4th place. I didn't drive the Chevy because after seeing the interior I knew it wasn't going to cut it. The Ford was nice all the way around and would have been fine to buy. The last vehicle I drove was the Ram and it was by far the best in ride, interior, tech, etc. I ended up buying a Ram with the 5.7 hemi, 8 speed, 4x4, 8.4 inch screen (love it), etc and couldn't be happier. I'm still getting use to driving such a huge vehicle and the 16mpg that goes along with it. The last truck I drove was in the mid 80's and was my fathers Chevy Silverado. They have come a long ways. The only negative I would say about all these trucks is the price. This one had a sticker of $44k and after rebates and such I paid about $35k, which i think is fair. I don't think any of these trucks are worth anything close to the MSRP. On the other hand I don't think a BMW 328i is worth $50k either. If you would have told me a year ago that a person like me who has owned multiple Acura's, Lexus, Infiniti, Honda (5), and Nissan would own a Ram truck I would have just laughed.
      Rick Slusher
      • 1 Year Ago
      When buying a Dodge or Fiat what ever you want to call it,tell them you want to buy two bodies to go with that drive train,cause the first one will fall apart before the payment book.
      Bill Burke
      • 1 Year Ago
      No surprise here. With Chrysler stressing quality like never before and getting results, the word on their quality and reliability is spreading. Other measures have been taken to increase residuals and resale value and that too is showing positive results. Higher retail sales and the lowest fleet sales in the industry also are driving the entire Chrysler Group to greater sales and market share without major incentives. Although questioned by some, the decision to separate the Ram truck brand from Dodge is also having positive results as Ram is fully focused on the truck market and Dodge is growing and refocusing it's brand. It's slow, hard work, but for Chrysler faithfuls like myself, the early results are gratifying. As stated, no surprise here.
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