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Open Roads Forum  >  Tow Vehicles

 > Ram 2500 Hemi tow review - UPDATED

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ib516

Canada

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Joined: 04/18/2003

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Posted: 05/16/14 10:15pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

So I finally got to put some miles on towing my 5er. The trip was only about 60 miles, but had some rolling hills, a bit of city towing fighting long weekend traffic too.

Set up is as pictured. Gcwr is about 18,500# give or take. We are lightly loaded gear wise, but the fresh water tank was full. I think its 60 gal.

[image]

It towed the load just fine, plenty of power to accelerate and climb grades, it even climbed all the overpasses in 5th with no downshifting or gear hunting. But I do have a couple nits to pick.

1, it can hold 5th gear, but it takes some coaxing to get there. If you just hit resume on the cruise, it will easily get back up to your set speed, but likes to hang in 4th at 2800 RPM, rather than use 5th at 2100 RPM. To get into 5th, you have to manually accelerate past the set speed, the let it slow down a bit and it will drop into, and hold 5th. Never saw 6th when towing.

2, I'm having issues with the built in brake controller recognizing that the RV is electrically connected to the truck. On the trailer brake screen on the EVIC it says "no trailer connected", even when the RV is connected and the lights (including brake and turn lights) all work, but the trailer brakes won't. After 15 min or so of driving it finally recognized the connection and the brake started working. It did the same thing during my 10 mile shake down tow. Likely a problem with my POJ RV.

Mileage was 8.4 mpg average from start, through the city and to the campground.

All in all I am happy, but I'd like to get the trailer brake thing figured out before we head to the mountains.

* This post was last edited 05/23/14 05:26pm by ib516 *   View edit history


Prev: 2010 Cougar 322QBS (junk)
02 Dodge 2500 4x4 5.9L CTD 3.55
07 Dodge 3500 4x4 SRW Mega 5.9L CTD 3.73
14 Ram 2500 4x4 Crew 6.4L Hemi 4.10
06 Chevy 1500 4x4 E-Cab 3.73 5.3L
All above are sold
Current: 07 Dodge 1500 5.7L Hemi 3.55 / 2010 Jayco 17z


ib516

Canada

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Posted: 05/16/14 10:17pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I'm using my cell phone to post so I broke it up.

Interestingly, the instant mpg was pretty much the same in 4th at 2800 and in 5th at 2100 rpm. That surprised me.

autorot8

OR

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Posted: 05/16/14 10:26pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Glad to hear your experience was good (for the most part). I towed for the first time last weekend with my 6.4L Hemi. I'm guessing I'm around 16000 - 16500 GCWR. I towed through various foothills and averaged 10 going, 11 coming home with mostly head and crosswinds going, not much coming home. At first I thought it was going to stay in 4th @ around 2300 all the time. Turns out it was just the wind. Once I got out of the wind and flat ground, it held 5th @ around 1900. I was quite happy with mine.


2015 Ram 2500 Laramie Crew Cab 4x4 6.4l Hemi
2020 Northstar TC800 EB
"Overstating the Obvious rarely helps the Oblivious!"

TurnThePage

North ID

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Posted: 05/16/14 11:28pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Looks great!

I think I would let it stay in 4th at 2800 RPMs if it thinks it should. May not be a reasonable comparison, but my old beater can tow around 2100 - 2200 RPMs, but it actually gets better mileage with OD locked out at 2800 RPMs.


2015 Ram 1500
2004 Pioneer 18T6

ianmac23

Dublin Ohio

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Posted: 05/17/14 03:43am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

It is interesting we have totally different trucks but I have the same issues. Sometimes if my truck downshifts to 4th it likes to hold it. And I noticed that my speed and wind determine my mpg not my gear


2010 GMC Sierra, 1500, SLT, Crew Cab, Short Bed, 6.2L, Max Towing Package,2011 Keystone Passport Ultralight Limited Edition


tragusa3

upstate south carolina

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Posted: 05/17/14 04:17am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Different truck, but I had the same trailer disconnect issue. After 2-3 trips it cleared up on its own. Never knew why...

Nice truck!


New to us 2011 Tiffin Allegro Open Road 34TGA
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MFL

Midwest

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Posted: 05/17/14 06:12am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Truck and trailer look great, nice match up!

Myself, I don't usually use the cruise in rolling hills. I don't mind dropping 5 mph going up a hill, and let it pick up a little, going down. I lock out 6th, unless having a good tail wind.

I could hold 6th on the level sometimes, but I just feel better, with the happy sounding engine in 5th.

Jerry





Hannibal

Tampa Bay Area

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Posted: 05/17/14 06:32am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I wish my '05 Hemi powered 2500HD would have held 3rd (direct) at 2700rpm. It's software was overly anxious to shift to 4th (O/D). It caused some unnecessary shifting. It didn't hurt anything. I would just have rather it stayed in 3rd. 27-2800rpm is loafing along for the Hemi. Mine was very quiet and smooth at that rpm. Before O/D was implemented for café requirements, that was normal cruising rpm empty or loaded.
My F250 with it's 5.4L, Torqshift and 3.73 ratio has a much better software program to match it's true 5sp transmission ratios. It does as you say your new Hemi Ram does. I like it that way. Less shifting and it's far better in my opinion to have to coax it to shift to 5th (O/D) than it is to have to try to keep it in 4th (direct). I use cruise control with tow/haul. Once it's happy that it's on flat ground with no head wind, it will shift to 5th and hold it until the next hill.
Sounds like the Hemi is doing a fine job with the weight and size of your 5th wheel!


2020 F250 STX CC SB 7.3L 10spd 3.55 4x4
2010 F250 XLT CC SB 5.4L 5spdTS 3.73
ex '95 Cummins,'98 12v Cummins,'01.5 Cummins,'03 Cummins; '05 Hemi
2017 Jayco 28RLS TT 32.5'

ib516

Canada

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Posted: 05/17/14 07:39am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Good point Hannibal, and something I'll try on the way home. I wonder if I just let it do it's own thing if it will go to 5th on it's own? I did use cruise control on the way here, but I wasn't really patient with letting it run in 4th and maybe finding 5th on it's own. The computer might, as you say, figure it out.

I have just over 600 miles on the truck now, so no doubt the trans is still learning.

blofgren

Surrey, B.C.

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Posted: 05/17/14 08:50am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Nice report. I too am impressed with how the Hemi handles that load.

I haven't towed enough with my Ram yet to know for sure but I do know that my Ford burnt noticeably more fuel when using cruise control while towing the trailer. I don't know why and hopefully this won't be an issue with the Ram because I like using it. I really like how the display shows the exact speed the cruise is set at in these trucks.

In regards to your trailer brake controller issue, I think you are right that it is an issue with your trailer. My truck recognized the trailer instantly when I plugged it in and the controller worked great. I also like how it automatically disables the back up sensors when connecting the trailer and the "trailer trip recorder" is really cool; it tells exactly the distance towed and the amount of time the trailer has been towed.


2013 Ram 3500 Megacab DRW Laramie 4x4, 6.7L Cummins, G56, 3.73, Maximum Steel, black lthr, RAM 20k sliding hitch, Retrax, Linex, and a bunch of options incl. cargo camera
2008 Corsair Excella Platinum 34.5 CKTS fifth wheel with winter package & disc brakes

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