Fiat Chrysler says the Ram 1500 Crew Cab truck has been named a Top Safety Pick+ for 2019 by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, making it the first full-size pickup to earn the sought-after top designation. The rating applies to the 2020 and to current-year models built since May, when equipped with adaptive LED headlamps with high-beam assist, plus Ram’s automatic emergency braking system, a.k.a. forward collision mitigation.
The addition of the LED projector headlamps appears to have sealed the deal, as previously tested versions of the 2019 Ram 1500 built after July 2018 but before June of this year earned “marginal” and “poor” marks for headlights, IIHS’s newest requirement to earn the top mark. The truck had otherwise previously earned “good” ratings for all crash tests, including driver- and passenger-side small overlap and side crashes. The headlamps are available on the Laramie and Limited trims.
Ram uses an integrated radar camera module to enable its forward collision mitigation system, which earned a “superior” rating. FCA consolidated the radar and camera components behind the vehicle’s rear-view mirror, which it says helps to simplify the interface and keeps the technology out of harm’s way in the event of a collision. The system, which is also optional, first warns the driver to take action to avoid a collision, then activates the brakes automatically if the driver fails to intervene. Other safety systems available include adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring and ready alert braking.
The 1500 also benefits from its patented splayed front frame-rails, which help better manage crash energy in certain frontal collisions.
Ram earlier this year rolled out its second-generation 260-horsepower EcoDiesel V6 for the 1500 and Ram 1500 Classic. It’s one of four engine options for the truck.