We drove a $69,000 RAM 1500 pickup truck that rivals Chevy Silverado and Ford F-150 - here are its coolest features

2019 RAM 1500 LonghornMatthew DeBord/BI

  • The 2019 RAM 1500 is the truckmaker's all-new entry in the full-size pickup wars, taking on the mighty Ford F-150 and the Chevy Silverado.
  • The RAM 1500 I reviewed came in a "Laramie Longhorn" edition with a stout Hemi V8.
  • This luxurious pickup was also packed with cool features.

The all-new RAM 1500 pickup truck recently triumphed in a faceoff against another newcomer to the ultra-competitive US scene: the equally all-new Chevy Silverado.

(In case you were wondering, the mighty Ford F-150 was redesigned a few years back, and we haven't checked it out since then, so stay tuned.)

In my rundown of the RAM's advantages, I noted that we tested a flashy, upmarket "Laramie Longhorn" edition, more than $10,000 costlier than the Chevy. But I also noted that the RAM 1500 is the best pickup I've driven in quite a while.

Because our tester was extremely well-equipped, verging on a luxury vehicle, it was packed with cool goodies. I played around with all of them. Pickups are already a cornucopia of extras - that's why the automakers can make so much money on them - but our Longhorn RAM 1500 took the matter to a different level.

Here's a rundown of all the awesome features.

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The RAM 1500 is Fiat Chrysler Automobiles' all-new entry into the Great American Pickup Truck Wars.

The RAM 1500 is Fiat Chrysler Automobiles' all-new entry into the Great American Pickup Truck Wars.

I tested a western-themed "Laramie Longhorn" edition, with a genuine four-wheel-drive setup and a short bed. This 5,400-pounder can tow 12,750 lbs.

I tested a western-themed "Laramie Longhorn" edition, with a genuine four-wheel-drive setup and a short bed. This 5,400-pounder can tow 12,750 lbs.

1. The new Ram has lost none of its aggressive design, so cool feature NUMBER 1 is that bold grille.

1. The new Ram has lost none of its aggressive design, so cool feature NUMBER 1 is that bold grille.

2. The RAM logo is equally aggressive.

2. The RAM logo is equally aggressive.

3. Under the hood, we find a stonking 5.7-liter V8 Hemi engine.

3. Under the hood, we find a stonking 5.7-liter V8 Hemi engine.

A mild hybrid "eTorque" system is coupled to the 5.7-liter V8, making a total of 395 horsepower with 410 foot-pounds of torque. The 0-60 mph time is about 6 seconds. Fuel economy is OK: 17 mpg city/22 highway/19 combined.

A mild hybrid "eTorque" system is coupled to the 5.7-liter V8, making a total of 395 horsepower with 410 foot-pounds of torque. The 0-60 mph time is about 6 seconds. Fuel economy is OK: 17 mpg city/22 highway/19 combined.

5. The four-wheel-drive system is robust ...

5. The four-wheel-drive system is robust ...

... although I didn't get to truly put it through its paces. I did power through some heavy snowfall.

... although I didn't get to truly put it through its paces. I did power through some heavy snowfall.

6. The RAM has no shifter. Instead, you use a space-saving knob, where you also control the 4WD setup. The RAM 1500 has an eight-speed automatic transmission.

6. The RAM has no shifter. Instead, you use a space-saving knob, where you also control the 4WD setup. The RAM 1500 has an eight-speed automatic transmission.

7. The key fob has a few tricks in store ...

7. The key fob has a few tricks in store ...

... Because if you look closely, you can see the buttons for remote start ...

... Because if you look closely, you can see the buttons for remote start ...

... And the remote tailgate!

... And the remote tailgate!

It works like a charm!

It works like a charm!

8. There's a step bumper to use for climbing into and out of the bed.

8. There's a step bumper to use for climbing into and out of the bed.

9. The automatically retracting running boards make accessing the crew-cab effortless. Plus, the pickup's air suspension can raise and lower the truck.

9. The automatically retracting running boards make accessing the crew-cab effortless. Plus, the pickup's air suspension can raise and lower the truck.

10. Longhorn touches are spread throughout the pickup ...

10. Longhorn touches are spread throughout the pickup ...

... sharing space with textured leather details and some lovely open-grain wood trim.

... sharing space with textured leather details and some lovely open-grain wood trim.

11. These rear-seat pouches/saddle bags would be over-the-top in anything but this truck.

11. These rear-seat pouches/saddle bags would be over-the-top in anything but this truck.

12. The RAM 1500 also has abundant storage, such as this dashboard tray ...

12. The RAM 1500 also has abundant storage, such as this dashboard tray ...

... and of course there are cupholders!

... and of course there are cupholders!

Not to mention a dual glove compartment.

Not to mention a dual glove compartment.

13. The panoramic moonroof is a particularly impressive feature. It really let's the light in.

13. The panoramic moonroof is a particularly impressive feature. It really let's the light in.

14. The 12-inch center touchscreen is stunning. FCA's Uconnect infotainment system is excellent. GPS navigation is solid, Bluetooth pairing is a snap, and there are USB/AUX ports for device charging.

14. The 12-inch center touchscreen is stunning. FCA's Uconnect infotainment system is excellent. GPS navigation is solid, Bluetooth pairing is a snap, and there are USB/AUX ports for device charging.

15. The interior was "Mountain Brown/Light Mountain Brown," and it was the nicest I've experienced in a pickup in the past few years. Seats are heated and cooled.

15. The interior was "Mountain Brown/Light Mountain Brown," and it was the nicest I've experienced in a pickup in the past few years. Seats are heated and cooled.

The rear seats were a roomy, bench-style design.

The rear seats were a roomy, bench-style design.

All in all, the premium interior of the RAM 1500 in Laramie Longhorn trim made the almost $70,000 price tag seem worth it.

All in all, the premium interior of the RAM 1500 in Laramie Longhorn trim made the almost $70,000 price tag seem worth it.

17. The trim on the gauges looks like tooled silver, the steering wheel has both leather wrapping and wood trim. The steering wheel is heated.

17. The trim on the gauges looks like tooled silver, the steering wheel has both leather wrapping and wood trim. The steering wheel is heated.

The 2019 Ram 1500 is a stupendous truck — and if you opt for the feature-rich Laramie Longhorn package, you're going to a happy pickup owner.

The 2019 Ram 1500 is a stupendous truck — and if you opt for the feature-rich Laramie Longhorn package, you're going to a happy pickup owner.
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